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3/2/2017 5:07:00 PM
Kids Count: Teen dating violence, suicide high in Indiana

Joseph Dits, South Bend Tribune Staff Writer

SOUTH BEND — In disbelief, the boy at Washington High School asked Thursday, “How often does a girl rape a guy?”

And a girl in the same health and wellness class chimed in, “It just wouldn't be able to happen.”

“Honestly you would be surprised,” Ashley Kramer, the teen dating violence prevention specialist from the YWCA North Central Indiana said.

No joke. Both boys and girls are victims. Indiana ranked sixth highest in the nation in a survey of high school students when asked if they'd been forced to have sex at some point in their lives. One out of 10 Hoosier students said they had been, according to the annual Kids Count report that the Indiana Youth Institute released this week.

Kids Count uses data to assess the well-being each year of children and families across the United States. It shows that homelessness and poverty have dropped statewide, but other problems persist, like the growing rate of child abuse and an infant mortality rate that, at 7.3 per 1,000, exceeds the national average of 5.9 per 1,000

Indiana kids thought about and tried suicide slightly more than the national average in 2015, Kids Count reports. In fact, suicide proved to be the second-leading cause of death for Hoosiers ages 15-24 in 2014 and 2015.

Related Links:
• South Bend full text

Related Stories:
• Record number of Indiana children entering foster care system
• Vermillion County sees 'huge increase' in child abuse, neglect, ranking 11th in state
• Indiana House Bill 1430 looks to help curb teen suicide

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