Child Abuse and Neglect Statistics
Annual ReportFiscal Year 1997

Department Organization

Administratively the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) is divided into seven different regions. Six of these regions are determined geographically. The term "downstate regions" applies to all of Illinois outside of Cook county. Downstate is comprised of three geographically established areas called Northern, Central and Southern regions. Cook county is divided into four regions. Three of the Cook regions reflect their location in Cook county and are call Cook North, Cook Central and Cook South. A fourth "region" is called Cook Administration. For reporting purposes, this "region" is composed of investigations done by the Chicago Police Department and Catholic Charities. Each region provides child protection and child welfare services to children and families in their respective areas.

Tables 5 and 6 reflect the number of children reported and "indicated" as child abuse/neglect victims by regions. Rather than looking at the numbers of children reported in each region, the reporting "rate per 1,000" provides a betterindication of what is occurring in the regions. Both the Central and Southern regions have a much higher reporting rate, 52.4 and 50.8 respectively, for their child population than any of the other regions. In Cook, although the reporting rate is not quite as high, there is a disparity between a reporting rate of 28.6 for Cook North and the other two Cook regions which have a reporting rate in the 40’s per 1,000. The regional distribution of reporting rates for "indicated" child victims is not quite as wide but even in this category both Cook North and the Northern region are lower than the other areas with an "indicated" reporting rate of only 10 children per 1,000.

Table 5

Regional Distribution of Reports of Children
Reported as Abused and Neglected
Fiscal Year 1997

Region Number of Children Reported Percent Rate per 1,000
Northern 25,000 20.9% 31.2
Central 29,211 24.5% 52.4
Southern 15,583 13.1% 50.8
Downstate Total 69,794 58.5% 41.9
Cook North 13,659 11.4% 28.6
Cook Central 15,652 13.1% 46.8
Cook South 18,711 15.7% 40.0
Cook Admin. 1,589 1.3%
Cook Total 49,611 41.5% 38.7
State Total 119,405 100.0% 40.5


Table 6

Regional Distribution of Reports of Children
Indicated for Abuse and Neglect
Fiscal Year 1997

Region Number of Children Reported Percent Rate per 1,000
Northern 8,251 19.5% 10.3
Central 10,484 24.8% 18.8
Southern 5,646 13.4% 18.4
Downstate Total 24,318 57.7% 14.6
Cook North 4,830 11.4% 10.1
Cook Central 6,156 14.6% 18.4
Cook South 6,099 14.4% 13.0
Cook Admin. 785 1.9%
Cook Total 17,870 42.3% 14.0
State Total 42,251 100.0% 14.3

Specific information on both the number of family reports and the number of children reported and "indicated" for child abuse/neglect is provided by county in Table 7 and Table  8. The county breakdown demonstrates the broad spectrum of reporting rates statewide. It extends from a rate of 69.9 children per 1,000 in Vermilion county to 14.9 in Dupage county. For "indicated" reports the rates have less disparity, ranging from 29.8 per 1,000 in Christian county to 4.9 in Hardin county.