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The 2008 Kids Count Missouri Data Book, released by Citizens For Missouri’s Children (CMC), shows a number of positive changes as well as challenges for Missouri’s children. One of the positive changes includes an overall decrease in the rates of child abuse and neglect between 2003 and 2007.

The annual publication, a collaborative project of CMC, the Children’s Trust Fund (CTF), and more than 30 public and private organizations from across the state, documents the status of children in all Missouri counties and the City of Saint Louis.

The book provides information on measures of child well-being covering areas such as health, education, financial security, juvenile justice and child protection. In conjunction with the release of the book, CMC has created a unique interactive Web tool that allows users to compare county-by-county data over time.

For the third year in a row, Saint Charles County was ranked as the state’s most kid-friendly area, based on a composite of all KIDS COUNT measures. Platte County, located just north of Kansas City, was second, followed by Atchison, Worth, and Nodaway Counties in northwest Missouri. The City of Saint Louis ranked last in the composite rankings, with Dunklin, Pemiscot, McDonald, and Ripley Counties in southeast Missouri rounding out the bottom five. The state’s two largest counties, Saint Louis County and Jackson County, ranked 18th and 85th respectively.

Data for the report is compiled from more than 80 federal, state, county and municipal sources by the Office of Social and Economic Data Analysis (OSEDA) at the University of Missouri.  Primary funding for the project is provided by CTF, the Annie E. Casey Foundation and Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation.

Related –   CMC Kids Count General Release – 5/11/09;
Download 2008 Kids Count Data Book (pdf)