Violence against children in South Africa: the cost of inaction to society and the economy

Celia Hsiao (Lead Author), Deborah Fry, Catherine L. Ward, Gary Ganz, Tabitha Casey, Xiaodong Zheng, Xiangming Fang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Despite the extent and magnitude of violence against children in South Africa, political and financial investments to prevent violence against children remain low. A recent costing study investigating the social burden and economic impact of violence against children in South Africa found that notable reductions can be made to mental and physical health outcomes in the population if children were prevented from experiencing sexual, physical, and emotional violence, as well as neglect and witnessing family violence. Given the far-reaching effects of violence on children’s lives, the study further estimated that the cost of inaction in 2015 amounted to nearly 6% of the country’s GDP. Preventing children from experiencing and witnessing violence can help to strengthen the health of a nation by ensuring children reach their full potential and drive the country’s economy and growth. Inter-sectoral collaboration and improving routine monitoring data, such as through the sustainable development goals, form ways in which preventing and ending violence against children may be prioritized in South Africa.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalBMJ Global Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jan 2018

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • Violence against children
  • violence prevention
  • South Africa
  • cost of inaction


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