What to do if you suspect a child is being abused

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The disturbing report of a child being chained up outside a home in the Fox Meadows area is bringing up the important question of what to do if you think a child is being abused.

There is legislation in place to make sure suspicions are voiced.

Virginia Stallworth with the Memphis Child Advocacy Center said at a press conference about child safety, “It’s the responsibility of all adults to keep kids safe.”

After police and the Department of Children’s Services responded the call of a child being restrained Thursday night, that message is in the spotlight.

District Attorney General Amy Weirich said, “Regardless of what the crime is, when we’re talking about children in the state of Tennessee, every adult in the state of Tennessee has a duty to protect our children.”

It is a responsibility that falls not just on parents, but with everyone.

“If you are suspicious that a child is being sexually or physically abused or you witness that, you have a duty under the law to pick up the phone and call,” Weirich said.

That is exactly what one neighbor said she tried doing after her son told her a boy was being restrained outside the home on Gaywinds Ave. She said she told a police officer two weeks ago. Memphis police said they are not sure whether that is true.

If you see or suspect child abuse or neglect, call the child abuse hotline at 877-237-0004.

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