The research work analyses the cause of child abuse and neglect. The various form of child abuse and their impact on the child and the society. Child abuse and neglect leads to denial of the child’s right which includes: education, food, health, medical care etc. to determine the trend and pattern of child abuse and neglect, identifying factors that lead parents/guardians engaging in abusing their children.

Questionnaires were distributed to respondents in the study area. Data obtained and were presented analyzed. The analysis showed that the socio-economic status of parent is a major factor that make parents to abuse their children, educationally, emotionally, and use them as hawkers, beggars etc. Other factors include level of education of parents, inability of government to meet up its citizens’ needs, lack of legislation against child abuse and neglect, parenting style. Child abuse and neglect exposes children to danger that can influence their social behaviour thus, leading to juvenile delinquency which contributes to social menace in the society.

The government should ensure that the social-economic status of parents is improved so that they can not abuse nor neglect their children.


Title page i

Declaration ii

Approval page iii

Dedication iv

Acknowledgements v

Abstract vii

Table of Contents ix


1.1 Background of the Study 1

1.2 Statement of the Problem 3

1.3 Objectives of the Study 3

1.4 Significance of the Study 4

1.5 Scope and Limitation of Study 5


2.1 Introduction 6

2.2 Causes of Child Abuse 7

2.3 State of a Child 11

2.4 Forms of Child Abuse and Neglect 12

2.5 Child Neglect 17

2.6 The Impact of Child Abuse on the Victim 19

2.7 The Impact of Child Abuse on the Society 20

2.8 Rights of the Child 20

2.9 Theoretical Frame of Reference 21


3.1 Introduction 24

3.2 Population of Study 24

3.3 Sample Size and Sampling Techniques 25

3.4 Instrument for Data Collection 25

3.5 Method of Data Analysis 26

3.6 Statistical Techniques used in Analysis 

of the Data 27


4.1 Introduction 28

4.2 Demographic Data of Respondents 28

4.3 Major Findings 38


5.1 Summary of Findings 40

5.2 Recommendations 41

5.3 Conclusion 44

5.4 The Role of Social Workers in the Ameliorating

Child Abuse in the Nigerian Society 45




The concepts of child abuse and child neglect are forms of maltreatment on the child that impedes child survival, development, and participation. Children are seen as assets to parents and government because they are human resources that any society can boast of, therefore, parents and government invest in them in order to obtain better tomorrow. This can be achieved however if their early childhood socialization is devoid of harmful cultural practices that crippled their chances of survival, development, and participation.Ejikeme (1987) defines child abuse as a problem arising from the intention of an adult to carry out an act that is inimical or detrimental to the physical, intellectual, language, emotional, moral, and social development of a child; while child neglect which involves some degree of deprivation refers to an intentional failure of an adult to perform physical, cognitive, moral and social development of a child.However, it is imperative to note in this premise that what constitutes child maltreatment in one society may not be considered the same in another society, this is because of cultural differences, beliefs, and practices. From the above, it will be important to trace the fact that there might be different factors that caused child abuse and neglect since the application of cultural ideology is not universal; that is, it changes across societies.However, different forms of child maltreatment exist like child trafficking, street begging, street hawking, child discrimination or child preference, early marriage, prostitution, child labor, use of virgin girl-child for ritual/sacrifice, etc. despite tangible evidence or empirical indicators of child abuse and neglect, it is difficult to measure.This is so because it is recognized as a major social problem that occurs in all levels of social class, race, religion, and ethnic groups. It is important to note that the practice of child abuse and neglect is supported by the government indirectly when the individual is seen as a product of society.Poor socio-economic status of parents traces its roots through unemployment and destitution as the government does not address social inequality, unemployment, and poverty amongst its citizens, instead of people in position work towards actualizing their selfish ends, and those who cannot meet the social values through the legitimate means result to deviance and crime as postulated by Robert K. Merton, Alemika and Best (1988) argues that our past successive state Governors/Administrators both military and Politicians, business individuals, foreigners, etc who loot billions of Naira from the country’s treasury and precipitate years of economic crisis, political instability, etc are hardly arrested, prosecuted nor jailed, instead they are rewarded with Chieftaincy titles, honorary degrees, ministerial appointments, contracts and the like.STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEMForms of child maltreatment like; child abandonment, child abduction, child trafficking, street begging, street hawking, child labor, prostitution, early marriage, and the like, deteriorate and cause a total decay of the society. This fosters insecurity and anarchy as a result of inadequate means of meeting legitimate goals or values of the society. This jeopardizes not only the immediate children but further endangers our future continuum and a tactical genocidal wipe of humanity since child maltreatment maimed the survival, development, and participation of the child.OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDYThe research at glance intent to critically analyze appraises and examines the impact of negative attributes of child abuse and neglect on the individual, families, and society. The specific objectives are:    Determine the impact of child abuse and neglect on the child.    Determine the relationship between child abuse, child neglect, and crime.    Determine the roles of parents and government in curbing the menace.    Determine the influence of culture in propagating child abuse and neglect.    Make appropriate recommendations to the government.SIGNIFICANCE OF STUDYChild abuse and child neglect are social problems that affect a significant number of people about which something needs to be done. This menace deters technological advancement and wastes a lot of wisdom and talents. This study, however, would help reduce the number of people affected through adequate mobilization and campaign against this catastrophe. This study would also help in legislating against the catastrophe. This study would provide a data bank that serves as literature for further use by scholars.SCOPE AND LIMITATIONS OF STUDYThis study was restricted to the Gyel district of Jos south local government area; this is to provide the researcher access to sample a particular target population to ensure meaningful work.



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