You will be redirected to the page you want to view in  seconds.

Child neglect quadruples during deployments, study shows

Jul. 29, 2013 - 10:50AM   |  
From the archives: Army Times takes an in-depth lo...
From the archives: Army Times takes an in-depth lo...: In 2013, Army Times took an in-depth look at child abuse.
  • Filed Under

Child abuse in active-duty Army families spiked 40 percent from 2009 to 2012 as soldiers returned from the war zones in big numbers. But even when soldiers were heavily deployed, many of their children still suffered — at the hands of stressed-out spouses.

Dr. Rene Robichaux, the social work programs manager at Army Medical Command, points to a study on maltreatment of children that compared combat deployment periods to nondeployment periods. Among female civilian spouses, the study showed, the rate of child neglect during deployments nearly quadrupled and physical abuse nearly tripled.

“You have moms who aren’t sleeping, and the children aren’t sleeping,” Robichaux said. “It’s a lethal combination.”

Robichaux is cited in the study, published Aug. 1, 2007, in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The study covered the period from Sept. 1, 2001, through Dec. 31, 2004, and included 1,858 parents in 1,771 Army families that had at least one substantiated incident of maltreatment.

The 2004 study has not been repeated, Robichaux said, but he’s confident that not much has changed.

The study included only families of enlisted soldiers, E-4 through E-9, as researchers determined the 49 families with an officer parent and a reported incident of maltreatment was too small a sample size to be statistically reliable.

However, the researchers noted in the JAMA article that further analysis suggested “there is not a difference in the reporting of child maltreatment for families of officers vs. enlisted soldiers.”

The study’s authors credited the Army for providing a range of preventative and support resources but said the increase in child maltreatment during combat deployments suggested a need for more and better services for parents on the home front.

Answers by RallyPoint

Join trending discussions in the military's #1 professional community. See what members like yourself have to say from across the DoD.

More In News

Start your day with a roundup of top defense news.

VA Home Loan

Search By:

Product Options:
Zip Code:

From Our Blogs


The latest from PT365

News for your in-box

Sign up now for free Military Times E-Reports. Choose from Money and Education. Subscribers: log in for premium e-newsletters.

This Week's Army Times

This Week's Army Times

CrossFit vs. unit PT
Troops will do the training plans in a $2.5 million study

Subscribe for Print or Digital delivery today!

MilitaryTimes Green Trusted Classifieds Looking to buy, sell and connect on Military Times?
Browse expanded listings across hundreds of military installations.
Faces of valorHonoring those who fought and died in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
hall of valorThe Hall of Valor is a searchable database of valor award citations collected by Doug Sterner, a Vietnam veteran and Military Times contributing editor, and by Military Times staff.

All you need to know about your military benefits.

Benefits handbook

Guard & Reserve All you need to know about the Guard & Reserve.

guard and reserve handbook