Updated: May 26
As a pediatrician, I love to work with children and parents. Occasionally, I even get to wear goofy ties. In medicine, I like concrete numbers - a patient’s temperature, their white blood cell count, and how many inches they have grown. All numbers, but numbers I can evaluate and act upon.
My involvement with the Super Hero Kids Foundation is similarly related to the numbers: 1 in 10 and 1 in 4. Unfortunately, these are not fractions or parts of a math problem. Instead, they are the disheartening statistics of sexual abuse in the U.S. One in 10 children are sexually abused during their childhood and 1 in 4 women are sexually assaulted. These numbers are mind-numbing, especially when you think of all the people you know or interact with, those who live in your neighborhood, those who go to school, or go to church, or you see shopping. Apply these numbers and you will quickly see the terrible ramifications of these statistics - the sheer number of people who are affected by sexual abuse and assault. Additionally, it is not just the short-term physical effects of an assault that make these numbers horrible, it is also the long-term risks of depression, anxiety, drug addiction and difficult social relationships that subsequently occur due to the assault. These numbers, 1 in 10 and 1 in 4, represent a huge problem.
However, I mentioned that I like to act on numbers and this is why I joined the Super Hero Kids Foundation board. The programs and training that this foundation supports are straight-forward, age-appropriate, easily learned and most important of all, they work! Giving children and young adults the education and tools for the prevention of abuse and assault is imperative. I know the information stays with kids, as I have asked many of them in my practice what they learned when they have taken the program and nearly all know the main teaching point: “Get Away and Tell!”
Through Super Hero Kids Foundation and the empowering programs it supports, our goal is for these numbers, 1 in ten and 1 in 4, to decrease. No child or adult should have to experience abuse or assault. Our vision is for ALL kids to be safe from abuse and assault. I am happy to support the strong mission of Super Hero Kids Foundation. It is my personal and concrete way, to act upon these numbers.
- Steve Lutz, M.D.
Dr. Stephen Lutz received a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Duke University and a Medical Degree from the State University of New York in Buffalo. He completed his pediatric residency at the University of Minnesota. He has worked as a pediatrician at Southdale Pediatrics in Eden Prairie, Minn., for the past 25 years. Throughout his career he has seen the importance of addressing topics such as sexual assault and empowering children to seek help. He is honored to be able to promote the vital goals of The Super Hero Kids Foundation by serving on its Board.