All parents experience joys and challenges in raising children. But not all parents have the information, support system, and positive example that helps them safely deal with normal, but difficult, infant behaviors such as inconsolable crying. Child abuse or neglect in Oklahoma has risen 58% from 2010 (7,248 children) to 2013 (11,418 children), despite a reduced number nationwide.* Through its supported organizations, The William K. Warren Foundation engages and empowers parents and child caregivers to protect their children from harm.
*Oklahoma Department of Human Services, 2013
Oklahoma ranks as the third highest rate of shaken baby syndrome cases (2.33 per 100,000 people) in the nation. Tulsa County ranks as the eighth highest rate (3.58 per 100,000 people) of cases of all 3,141 counties in the nation.* Up to 22% of the children die from their injuries** and 80%*** who survive suffer permanent, life-long disabilities such as blindness, deafness, cerebral palsy, mental retardation, behavioral disorders, and impaired motor and cognitive skills.
*Northwestern University Medill Justice Project, 2013
**Archives de Pediatrie, 2013
***Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2014
Through The Parent Child Center of Tulsa, The William K. Warren Foundation funds a prevention educator to give families of newborns the tools they need to avert danger when their child is incessantly crying. These tools are offered to parents and other family caregivers in the hospital, immediately after the child’s birth. In 2013, the Foundation’s funds provided “Never Shake a Baby” training to the parents and caregivers of 833 babies with a goal to double this impact in 2014.
“I had one of those babies who wouldn’t stop crying. At times, I’d get so tired I could hardly think straight. I remember one time I was about to be not very nice to my baby when I heard your voice in my head telling me it’s okay to put the baby down in a safe place and walk away. So that’s what I did until I felt calmer.” *
*“Leslie,” (name changed to ensure privacy)
a former Saint Francis Health System
patient who shared this information with
PCCT staff during a follow-up phone call