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Flag-Raising Recognized Child Abuse Prevention Month

Flag-Raising Recognized Child Abuse Prevention Month

Hampden D.A. Mark Mastroianni will deliver keynote address

Springfield (March 31, 2011)—Hampden County District Attorney Mark Mastroianni will give the keynote address at a flag-raising ceremony recognizing April asChild Abuse Prevention Month on Monday, April 11, at 10 a.m. at Springfield City Hall.

Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno will deliver a proclamation and dozens of area human and social services agency directors and staff, as well as area school children, will participate in the event, including CHD (Center for Human Development), Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center, HCS Head Start, Dunbar Community Center, Square One, Early Childhood Center, Gandara Center, New North Citizens Council, Children’s Study Home, state Department of Children and Families, Mass. Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, and the state Department of Youth Services.

April was first declared “Child Abuse Prevention Month” by presidential proclamation in 1985.

Since then, organizations dedicated to protecting children have used this special time of year to acknowledge the importance of families and communities working together to prevent child abuse in all its forms. By ensuring that all parents in our community have access to quality childcare, affordable health services, parenting education resources, and substance abuse and mental health programs, we make progress toward child abuse prevention.

The centerpiece of the event is the raising of a flag that depicts children as blue silhouettes on a red background, a missing middle child symbolizing all children who have been lost to violence.  Springfield’s flag-raising joins nearly 300 events flying flags in 101 cities over all 50 states. The Child Welfare League of America (CWLA) urges anyone who can to fly the flag all month long in support of efforts to protect children from harm. Nearly 3 million children are reported abused and neglected each year in the United States, according to CWLA.

CHD, the event organizer, invites all area organizations to join us on April 11 at City Hall to rally around those committed to preventing child abuse and neglect in our communities.

For more information, please contact John Roberson, vice president of CHD’s Children and Families division at (413) 439-2243 or


About CHD: Founded in 1972, the nonprofit Center for Human Development (CHD) is a family of more than 40 programs that deliver a wide range of social services in communities throughout western Massachusetts and northwestern Connecticut in areas such as mental health, youth mentoring, family stabilization, foster care, early intervention, elder care, occupational therapy, intellectual and physical disabilities, homelessness prevention, substance abuse, and juvenile justice. Our main office is located at 332 Birnie Ave., Springfield, MA 01107 (413) 733-6624. For a complete list and description of programs and services, please go to our Web site at


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