Child sexual abuse victims face long-term financial costs
We often focus on the physical and psychological tolls surrounding child sexual abuse. A large body of research examines the pain and suffering victims endure after abuse occurs. The long-term economic burdens resulting from incidents of childhood sexual abuse are less researched. Yet understanding these costs allows us to focus on prevention and help victims get the help they need to avoid or mitigate further harm.
According to research funded by the Moore Center for the Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, the annual costs to address childhood sexual abuse victims averages to $9.3 billion. This figure includes the victims’ needs, costs of the crimes, and loss in productivity among survivors. Over $1 billion of these losses and expenditures involved the relatively small number of the most extreme and violent abuses: those that led to death.
Among survivors, the costs per victim are much higher than most would assume. Of the 40,387 survivors documented in incidents of childhood sexual abuse during 2015, three-quarters of the victims were female and it is estimated that each of these girls or young women who survived will experience costs and losses averaging $283,000 over their lifetimes for the abuses they endured. Costs for male victims remains under-researched.
Some important considerations are below.
The number of abuse victims is higher than we think
Reporting data places the number of victims each year in the tens of thousands, but such data is incomplete at best. Many incidents never get reported, or are discovered many years later only after other events have garnered attention. For example, some victims may have been arrested for drug use, engaged in prostitution or acquired HIV as an adult, or had other situations that were precipitated by sexual abuse that occurred during their childhood years. A nude selfie shared with a friend or stranger under coercion that finds its way onto the internet may lead to many years of shame and depression that no dollar figure can describe.
The costs include problems that occur beyond an abusive incident
In addition to medical costs associated with abuse, there are treatment and health-related costs for anxiety, depression, PTSD, high-blood pressure, and other social costs that may last many years or an entire lifetime. There are also the costs involved in criminal investigations and the need for counseling and treatment of all parties, including those who committed the offense.
Childhood sexual abuse has a high cost to society and the individuals affected. As we work to help victims of abuse and prevent future instances of abuse, it is important to keep in mind the economic damage suffered by abuse victims.
Verdicts and Settlements
Verdict of $88,000,000
Settlement of $12-Million
Settlement of $10-Million
NEGLIGENT SECURITY HOMICIDE
Verdict of $1.75-Million
Verdict of $1.53-Million
Settlement of $1.4-Million
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Ben and Nate took their time in handling my case with compassion and care. I never had to wonder what was going on. They always made sure to include me in each and every decision that needed to be made before they were made. Their entire staff was always very polite and knowledgeable. I cannot say enough kind words about Andreozzi + Foote; they are simply the best!
One of the best personal injury lawyers in the country. Great experience. Really genuine people at Andreozzi and Associates.
Handled our case SO well even though it took a long time to settle, and STILL helps us with paperwork related to the settlement account every now and then. They were honest with us from the get-go, worked REALLY hard on our behalf, and always kept in touch with us about what was going on. So pleased.
When you and your child are victims of a horrid crime it’s hard to understand why things are the way they are. Information and answers are what you want, but unfortunately the system doesn’t offer that. Nathaniel has fielded and patiently listened to a broken mother wanting nothing more than for someone to help her understand why she has no answers, and through these phone calls Nathaniel has been very informative, honest and upfront. I would recommend Nathaniel and this firm to anyone who is seeking answers, help and professionalism in a firm when going through such difficult times.
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It is impossible to put into words our gratitude for Ben and Nate through the most trying time of our life. As scared, confused, and traumatized parents, the isolation and loneliness of litigation are abysmal. In the beginning, everyone surrounding you has endless bright ideas and can’t say enough how you should pursue action, but then when it comes down to it, these cheerleaders are suddenly silent and nowhere to be found in what feels to be your darkest hour. Thank God we had these two extraordinary men at our side from the moment we contacted them. Their friendship, counsel, and sound resolve to do everything they could in order to balance the scorecard meant more than we can ever convey, and is simply immeasurable. If we had known how simple this seemingly horrific ordeal would’ve been with their help from the start, we wouldn’t have agonized a single minute over doing what we did. If you are in a similar position as I’ve described, take advice from someone who’s been through the worst, thankfully with the best. Call them!