History of ISPCAN

Our roots began in Denver, as a vision of a local pediatrician, Henry Kempe. He published the groundbreaking work, the “Battered Child Syndrome, ” in which Dr. Kempe recognized that it was not a private family matter, but rather the community’s responsibility to protect child rights.  Through his own medical practice he also realized that child centered, optimal outcomes would be realized only through the dedication of diverse sectors. 

On July 7, 1977, the International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (ISPCAN) was established.

ISPCAN’s work embodies Henry Kempe’s desire that all of us working in the field never cease to ask difficult questions, to challenge ourselves to reach beyond what is possible and to strive for what is needed to protect children. We continue to adapt, evolve and progress with our global workforce to rise up to end child abuse to do more, and do better for our members.

Foundational Principles

UN Committee on the Rights of the Child

UN Sustainable Development Goals

Organizational Documents (Downloadable)

Safeguarding Policy

Diversity & Inclusion Policy

Code of Conduct Policy