It’s a troubling statistic: almost forty percent of child fatalities in the state are preventable.

aaaa

Those were the results the State’s Child Advocate Jeanne Milstein shared with top state officials Tuesday of a study of the 1,536 child deaths in the last decade.

“We can do so much more to prevent these tragedies,” said Milstein, who expects the final report to be released in the next few weeks.

But it wasn’t all grim news. Milstein says that while only 55 percent of child fatalities were from natural causes, the numbers of accidental deaths from things like a child drowning or from a car crash are on the decline.

“I know it’s because of prevention activities,” she said.

The state has in recent years began public awareness campaigns for various issues including importance to wearing seatbelt and not to leave children unattended by swimming pools.

milstein

Jeanne Milstein with Sen. Beth Bye

Legislators earlier this year also overhauled the school bullying law in attempt to reduce youth suicides. There have been 77 youth suicides in the last decade, some as young as 10 years old, Milstein said.

Elaine Zimmerman, the executive director of the Connecticut Commission on Children, said prevention methods is the key to bringing the numbers down even further.

“There’s a whole series of places we can make sure it’s embedded,” she said.

Avatar photo

Jacqueline Rabe Thomas

Jacqueline was CT Mirror’s Education and Housing Reporter, and an original member of the CT Mirror staff, joining shortly before our January 2010 launch. Her awards include the best-of-show Theodore A. Driscoll Investigative Award from the Connecticut Society of Professional Journalists in 2019 for reporting on inadequate inmate health care, first-place for investigative reporting from the New England Newspaper and Press Association in 2020 for reporting on housing segregation, and two first-place awards from the National Education Writers Association in 2012. She was selected for a prestigious, year-long Propublica Local Reporting Network grant in 2019, exploring a range of affordable and low-income housing issues. Before joining CT Mirror, Jacqueline was a reporter, online editor and website developer for The Washington Post Co.’s Maryland newspaper chains. Jacqueline received an undergraduate degree in journalism from Bowling Green State University and a master’s in public policy from Trinity College.

Leave a comment