In my interview with child sexual abuse expert Cordelia Anderson last month, she told me that child sexual predators often look for children who are particularly needy for male attention, such as children with single mothers and absent fathers. They may also target kids with special needs.
In Abusers Used School In Impoverished Area as Stalking Grounds, however, USA Today points out that poverty and a family’s immigration status is another factor that puts children at risk for sexual abuse.
“At Miramonte, the victims could hardly have been more disadvantaged: The 1,400 students are virtually all from poor Latino homes, a majority from immigrant families where English isn’t spoken at home, and some with parents lacking legal immigrant status. It’s a voiceless community where fear is ingrained - fear of authority, fear of the police, fear of immigration enforcement, fear of retribution.
“The hard-pressed barrio school is just the kind of place where an adult with bad intentions could take advantage of a child, knowing there was little chance a victimized family would report the acts. Or if they did, little chance they would be believed.”
This sounds a lot like the Jerry Sandusky case in which the former Penn State assistant football coach allegedly used his charity for poor and at-risk youth to target and then groom his victims.
- Child Sexual Abuse: It’s More Prevalent Than You Think
- Number of Misconduct Reports In LAUSD Schools Is Now 5