April 21, 2021
Pinwheels for Prevention: The Faces Behind the Numbers
Salt Lake City, UT - April is National Child Abuse Prevention month, and across the United States communities come together to advocate for child abuse prevention. Last year, Utah had 10,564 children who were physically, mentally, sexually, and emotionally abused or neglected. In Salt Lake County alone there were 3,616 confirmed cases of child abuse last year, and 90% of the time the abuser was someone within the child’s circle of trust. Abuse affects more than just the child in that moment, it changes a future and alters society. The lifetime cost of child maltreatment is $831,000 per child and $16.6 million per child for deaths. On average 1 in 10 Utah children will be sexually abused before they turn 18, and every year approximately 80 Utah children witness the murder or attempted murder of their mother. Child Abuse is full of statistics like these, but it is so much more than that. There is a child, a face behind every number. A child who has not been fed, whose legs have been bruised or has never heard the words “I love you”. A child who is deserving of a future where they feel safe. A future filled with endless possibilities.
On the morning of Wednesday, April 21st, we invite you to join Mayor Wilson, the Family Support Center, along with other Salt Lake County representatives and community leaders to stand up for the faces behind the numbers. At 9:00 a.m. volunteers will begin placing blue pinwheels on the west lawn of the Salt Lake County Government Center along State Street. Blue pinwheels are the national symbol of child abuse prevention month, and one will be planted in remembrance of every single Salt Lake County child who fell victim to child abuse during 2020. A total of 3,616 pinwheels will stand in memory of their heartache, their pain, and their tears and will cry out to us to remind us that we still have work to do. Child abuse respects no racial, religious, socio-economic, or geographic boundaries. Child abuse is preventable, and as a community we need to come together and be attentive to the problems of families around us and commit to doing everything we can to prevent it. Following the pinwheel planting, at 10:30 a.m. Mayor Wilson will read a Proclamation Against Child Abuse inviting all residents to do what they can to protect children and prevent child abuse.
Together, we stand behind every number, we stand behind every child, and we will continue to stand until we live in a world free of abuse. To learn how you can help, visit www.familysupportcenter.org/behindthenumbers.
Who: Family Support Center Executive Director Jocelyn De La Rosa, Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson, Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill, Salt Lake County Youth Services Director Carolyn Hansen, Salt Lake County Undersheriff Jake Peterson
When: April 21st - 10:30-11:00 a.m.
Please arrive at 10:00 a.m. to get video of volunteers planting pinwheels. Mayor Wilson and the other participants from Salt Lake County will plant pinwheels following the proclamation at 10:30 a.m.
Where: West lawn of the Salt Lake County Government Center
2001 S. State Street, Salt Lake City
The Family Support Center’s mission is to Protect Children, Strengthen Families, and Prevent Child Abuse. Starting with the first Crisis Nursery in 1977, FSC has carefully changed, added, and expanded programs to meet the dynamic needs of the populations served and furthering our mission. FSC now provides an interconnected web of services including crisis nurseries, counseling, in-home family mentoring, adoption respite, community education classes, and LifeStart Village.