The Third National Incidence Study of Child Abuse and Neglect made this clear:
For neglect under the "harm" standard:
Children living with only their moms: 16.7 per 1,000 children.
Children living with only their dads: 21.9 per 1,000 children.
NIS-4, by the way, has stopped collecting data for custodial dads. They lump all the data together under "single parents"--presumably as a result of pressure from the fathers rights crowd, who find all this an inconvenient truth. They would much rather perpetrate the raw numbers on neglect, where mothers dominate by sheer heft (mothers are the vast majority of caretakers, so naturally they will represent the majority of those who are blamed in neglect cases). Moms also tend to be blamed for neglectful conditions (dirty houses, failure to seek medical care in a timely fashion)--even if there is a stay-at-home father in the home or a father otherwise involved in the children's lives. In addition, mothers are routinely cited for neglect for "failing to protect" the child from paternal abuse, though it's very rare for it to go the other way. And by the way, all those murder-suicides involving the kids? Those murders perpetuated almost exclusively by fathers? Those aren't generally counted as "child abuse." They're just homicides. So the numbers are definitely spun.
And what happened to this particular mother anyway? Is she alive? What? How did this guy get custody anyway? Anybody in Dutchess County family court want to take credit for this brilliant move?
INVISIBLE MOTHER ALERT.
POLICE: Father left 4-year-old Dover boy home alone
December 18, 2010
A 57-year-old Dover man was arrested recently for leaving his 4-year-old boy home alone, and as a result, has lost custody of two children, the Dutchess County Sheriff’s Office reported this morning.
An investigation revealed that the boy had been left at home by himself while his father was at work and the boy's 11-year-old sister was at school, police alleged.
The man was charged with one count of endangering the welfare of a child, a misdemeanor, and was released on an appearance ticket after being processed. He is due to reappear before the Town of Dover Court on Jan. 18.
Child Protective Services has taken custody of both children, police said.
The incident occurred at noon Tuesday, when sheriff deputies responded to the Dover residence after a tip from Dutchess County Probation.