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Boys & Girls Club of America Sexual Abuse Lawyer

Teens Playing Soccer Boys Girls ClubChild sexual abuse occurs nearly everywhere, but it is most common in places where adults have easy access to children. Organizations like the Boys & Girls Clubs of America pose risks of abuse from counselors, camp employees, organization directors, or older campers by allowing unsupervised access to children.

Sexual offenses at the Boys & Girls Clubs could lead to lasting harm for victims. If you or someone you know has suffered abuse, hire our law firm, and experienced abuse lawyers now.

A Youth Organization Injury Attorney Can Help

The personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers are committed to holding the Boys and Girls Club and other youth organizations fully accountable for sexual abuse on their premises by their employees and guests.

We represent sex abuse survivors harmed by leaders of the Boys and Girls Clubs of America (BGCA), Boy Scouts of America, Girl Scouts of America, and other youth organizations. We handle all sex abuse allegations against employees to hold sexual predators legally and financially accountable.

Boys and Girls Club of America Sexual Abuse FAQs

Below are some frequently asked questions raised by victims of sexual abuse at a Boys and Girls Club of America. Should you have additional questions, we invite you to contact our law firm for a free consultation with an experienced attorney.

How Common Is Sexual Abuse Among Children of Different Ages?

All children are at risk of sexual assault from predators determined to violate their innocence. Sexual assault affects girls and boys equally of all ages, from newborns to young adults.

While the statistics reveal a sharp decline in child sexual victimization rates, adolescents and children are still at higher risk of sexual assault than adults. Inappropriate sexual behavior is a pervasive problem that affects vulnerable children, adolescents, young adults, and individuals with developmental delays.

Are Any Particular Children at Increased Risk of Sex Abuse?

Vulnerability, mostly when left alone, is a common characteristic of children susceptible to sexual assault. Male and female sex offenders target defenseless children who are less likely to talk about what happened or those suffering physical, developmental, and emotional challenges.

Is There Any Way to Prevent Child Sexual Abuse?

Parents, society, schools, churches, and youth organizations can be proactive in reducing the prevalence of sexual offenses against children, adolescents, and young adults. Unfortunately, predators count on secrecy to hide their sexual offense on others, making identifying problems more challenging.

Parents and youth caregivers need to educate children and discuss how their bodies, especially their private parts, belong only to them. Parents must discuss their child’s privacy, use proper names for the child’s genitals, and speak without the embarrassment that others might trick them into secrecy when doing something inappropriate.

What Is the Psychological Impact of Child Sexual Abuse?

Many children who have been sexually assaulted at any stage in their early development will likely suffer post-traumatic stress reactions after an assault. In addition to PTSD, they will likely experience ongoing anxiety and depression.

Parents, teachers, and counselors should provide understanding and support while their child deals with the long-term effects of sexual impropriety. The common symptoms associated with abuse-related PTSD include:

  • Hyper-arousal when the child expresses jumpy, nervous, or anxious behavior during uncomfortable situations
  • Re-experiencing that might express itself as nightmares, sleep disturbances, frequent awakenings, insomnia, or “monsters under the bed”
  • Avoidance – The child will go to great lengths to not experience a traumatic reminder like avoiding a specific individual, fear of a monster under the bed, or not addressing for bathing or changing clothes

Who Are the Most Common Predators?

Most sexual predators are men and teenage boys. However, some predators are female. The offender is typically a known, trusted friend or associate of the children they victimize, like a family member, sibling, camp counselor, religious leader, teacher, coach, or friend.

What Should a Parent Do If Sexual Abuse Is Suspected?

While a parent’s first reaction to suspected sexual offenses involving a child is rage and retaliation, remaining supportive and calm will benefit the victim. Instead, reassure your child that the predator will be blamed and held responsible for their inappropriate behavior.

Next, contact a mental health counselor experienced in dealing with child sexual assault cases. Report what happened to local law enforcement and speak with an attorney specializing in assault claims.

Boys & Girls Club of America Promote Positive Behavior

The Boys & Girls Clubs of America is a national organization that claims to promote positive child behavior and character development. It provides allegedly safe places for children to learn, grow, and develop in most major cities across the United States. Boys & Girls Clubs have been around since 1860.

More than 4,000 local clubs are affiliates of the organization, serving more than four million children. While many “Club kids” benefitted from positive experiences at their local clubs, many others suffered at the hands of sexual abusers.

About Child Sex Abuse

Child sexual assault refers to forced or coerced sexual acts between a perpetrator and a child under seventeen. Sexual conduct can refer to physical touching, but it can also refer to non-physical acts, such as persuading a child to take photographs in sexual positions.

Sex abuse is a serious crime that can cause long-lasting emotional and psychological effects on the victim. Many children who suffer sexual offense experience outcomes such as:

  • Depression or anxiety
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Disassociation
  • Eating disorders
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Higher risk of sexual promiscuity
  • Sexually transmitted diseases
  • Drug and alcohol abuse
  • Self-harm
  • Suicidal thoughts or actions

A child who experienced sexual assault or violence at a B&G Club of America might suffer the consequences for life. Child sex abuse can have lasting adverse effects on a child’s emotions and development.

It could also have a physical impact, either directly (i.e., physical abuse, pregnancy) or indirectly (i.e., eating disorders, self-harm, suicide).

It is critical to spot the signs of sex abuse at a Boys & Girls Club to intervene as quickly as possible. Some children might be more at risk of sexual trauma than others.

Children Who Might Be at Risk of Sex Abuse

Unfortunately, any child could become the victim of sexual assault. However, some circumstances more often lead to child abuse crimes than others. As a parent, protecting your children takes awareness of the most common risk factors involved in sexual abuse cases.

The following risk factors can serve as red flags for abuse opportunities:

  • Overnight trips. Overnight club trips or camping excursions with a Boys & Girls Club could increase the risk of sexual offenses. Overnight stays come with more opportunities to get children alone and sexually assault them.
  • Activities that involve locker rooms. Many sex abuse cases involving clubs and schools happen in locker rooms. Avoiding activities that might involve changing, such as swimming or sports, could increase your child’s protection from inappropriate sexual conduct by others.
  • Negligence at the club level. Watch the Boys & Girls Club facility for signs of negligence, such as lack of child supervision or clubs that allow adult staff members to be alone with members. Adult men in positions of trust with children are incredibly risky.

Signs that your child might be suffering sex abuse at a Boys & Girls Club include not wanting to return to the club, fear or anxiety about seeing a particular counselor, feelings of guilt or shame, symptoms of depression, or inappropriate knowledge of sexual subjects.

If you notice possible signs of sex abuse, broach the subject with your child. Then, take action if you suspect abuse by contacting law enforcement in filing a sexual abuse lawsuit against the predator.

Examples of Boys & Girls Club Sex Abuse Cases

Thousands of cases of alleged child sexual abuse have involved Boys & Girls Clubs of America. One of the most recent cases named the Boys & Girls Club of Greenwich, Connecticut, as the defendant. The lawsuit alleges that three employees knew of at least nine boys sexually abused by a counselor in the 1970s and 1980s yet did nothing to intervene.

Another case from December 2018 involves Sonoma County Boys & Girls Clubs allegedly covering up a director’s child sex abuse.

One winning sex abuse lawsuit against the Tacoma Boys & Girls Club gave the abuse victim more than $1.5 million in damages. The case involved a volunteer who sexually abused the victim in the 1980s.

The case focused mainly on the lack of proper employee training by the Boys & Girls Club that contributed to the incident. In Illinois, public records show at least five sex abuse allegations against local Boys & Girls Clubs.

Clubs involved were in Chicago (two counts), Bloomington, Carpentersville, and Carbondale.

Many sexual predators in youth organizations face civil lawsuits and criminal cases that resulted in years in prison. The organization can also be held legally accountable for the molestation cover-up, failure to perform background checks, and not providing a safe environment for children.

Speak to a Boys & Girls Club Sex Abuse Attorney Today

If you or your child has experienced sexual abuse at a Boys & Girls Club location, contact Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC. Our sexual assault injury attorneys have years of experience handling these claims in Illinois.

Our trial lawyers will discuss your case during a free 100% confidential consultation at our local law office to understand your rights. Let us help you fight back against the grave injustice of child sex abuse.

Contact our law firm today at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) or through the contact form to schedule a free consultation to take immediate legal action against the predator and nonprofit organization. All discussions with our legal team remain confidential through an attorney-client relationship.

Our attorneys follow social distancing guidelines to prevent the spread of Covid-19 (coronavirus).

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