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University of Kentucky conducting study to help prevent child abuse

Stock image depicting child abuse
Stock image depicting child abuse

Preventing sexual abuse and trafficking of children in Kentucky is the focus of a study being conducted by the University of Kentucky. The “C-Stop-Now!” study is funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Their goal is to mobilize middle school staff to identify, intervene, and prevent cases of child sex trafficking in Kentucky.

Ann Coker is the director of the UK Center for Research on Violence Against Women. She said they chose the name of the campaign for a reason.

“The idea is that, when we know how to see it, we can stop it, which is the words behind the billboard and that’s a lot of what we are doing with our mass media campaign.”

She said nearly half of the counties in the commonwealth will be used for the research.

“There are actually 50 counties in this study. We’re randomizing so half of the counties get the billboard and the other half do not get the billboard, at least in the first couple years of the study. Over time, we may provide the billboards, if they’re working really well, we will provide those to the intervention as well as the control counties.”

Coker said middle school aged children at the highest risk for sexual abuse and trafficking. She said that is linked with the opioid epidemic and the children being trafficked by a family member.

More about this study can be found here.

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Stan Ingold is WEKU's News Director. He has worked in public broadcasting for 18 years, starting at Morehead State Public Radio before spending the past 10 years at Alabama Public Radio. Stan has been honored with numerous journalism awards for his public radio reporting.
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