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Child Sexual Abuse by Caretakers

Leslie Margolin and John L. Craft
Family Relations
Vol. 38, No. 4 (Oct., 1989), pp. 450-455
DOI: 10.2307/585752
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/585752
Page Count: 6
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Child Sexual Abuse by Caretakers
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Abstract

The purpose of this study is to identify the characteristics of caretakers who commit child sexual abuse. Using a sample of 2,372 cases of "founded" sexual abuse drawn from the state of Iowa, nonbiologically related caretakers are found to be substantially overrepresented in the volume of sexual abuse which was reported, and biologically related caretakers are underrepresented. The overrepresentation of nonbiologically related caretakers occurs among fathers (biological, step-, adoptive, and foster), mothers (biological step-, adoptive, and foster); and nonparental caretakers (siblings, grandparents, other relatives, paramours, institutional personnel, and babysitters). Although the ratio of male to female perpetrators varied from caretaker group to caretaker group in every category of caretaker which was assessed, the representation of male perpetrators greatly surpasses that of females. The need to assess the caretaking activity of nonbiologically related babysitters is noted and implications for practice are discussed.

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