The child abuse and neglect prevention act 250 0f 1982 was established to prevent the state child abuse and neglect prevention board; it also seeks to provide the powers and duties of the state child abuse and neglect prevention board; and to prescribe the powers and duties of certain state departments. Being a federal policy, this Act provides federal funding to States in support of prevention, assessment, investigation, prosecution, and treatment activities and also provides grants to public agencies and nonprofit organizations for demonstration programs and projects(Freeman, 1998). This was act was enacted in 1974 but has been amended several times in order to try and keep in line with the emerging trends regarding the rights of children. One such amendment includes the Keeping Children and Families Safe Act of 2003(P.L. 108-36).
Child abuse is a dynamic factor in modern societies. It is defined as “at a minimum, any recent act or failure to act on the part of a parent or caretaker, which results in death, serious physical or emotional harm, sexual abuse or exploitation, or an act or failure to act which presents an imminent risk of serious harm”(Act 250 of 1982, 722.602). However as detailed out by the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act, individual states are supposed to come up with their own definition and coverage of child abuse due to the opposing explanations offered regarding the same. This is going by the fact that the specified age by the law of the sate is that a children are individuals who have not attained the age of 18 years. The extent in which the neglect of a child is applied as detailed doubt by this act is that neglect is the act of failing to provide for the child’s basic needs. This may take the form of physical neglect where parents fail to provide food or shelter, or lack of appropriate supervision, medical neglect which is the failure to provide medical or mental health treatment and educational neglect which is the failure to educate a child or attend to special education needs and emotional neglect which is inattention to a child's emotional needs (Act 250 of 1982)
Abuse on the other hand takes the form of physical abuse where a child attains a physical injury such as minor bruises, severe fractures or death. This is regardless of the fact whether the caretaker intended to hurt the child. The other form of child abuse as detailed by The Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act is sexual abuse. The Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act defines sexual abuse as “the employment, use, persuasion, inducement, enticement, or coercion of any child to engage in, or assist any other person to engage in, any sexually explicit” The other form of abuse detailed in the act is emotional abuse which is described as the verbal, mental or psychological abuse that is carried out in the course of a child’s development. However, emotional abuse has proved to be a great challenge with respect to its application going by the fact that it is very hard to prove emotional abuse.