Suspected Child Abuse

  • ChildLine

    ChildLine is part of a mandated statewide child protective services program designed to accept child abuse referrals and general child well-being concerns and transmit the information quickly to the appropriate investigating agency.  ChildLine is responsible for receiving verbal and electronic referrals 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 

    The toll-free hotline, 1-800-932-0313, is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to receive reports of suspected child abuse. Mandated reporters can report electronically

     
     
    Signs of Abuse/Neglect

    PHYSICAL ABUSE - 

    Physical Indicators

    • Unexplained injuries 
    • Unbelievable or inconsistent explanations of injuries 
    • Multiple bruises in various stages of healing 
    • Bruises located on faces, ears, necks, buttocks, backs, chests, thighs, back of legs, and genitalia 
    • Bruises that resemble objects such as a hand, fist, belt buckle, or rope 
    • Injuries that are inconsistent with a child's age/developmental level 
    • Burns
    Behavioral Indicators
    • Fear of going home 
    • Extreme apprehensiveness/vigilance 
    • Pronounced aggression or passivity 
    • Flinches easily or avoids being touched 
    • Play includes abusive behavior or talk 
    • Unable to recall how injuries occurred or account of injuries is inconsistent with the nature of the injuries 
    • Fear of parent or caregiver
       

    SEXUAL ABUSE -

    Physical Indicators
    • Sleep disturbances 
    • Bedwetting 
    • Pain or irritation in genital/anal area Difficulty walking or sitting 
    • Difficulty urinating
    • Pregnancy
    • Positive testing for sexually transmitted disease or HIV
    • Excessive or injurious masturbation
    Behavioral Indicators
    • Sexually promiscuous
    • Developmental age-inappropriate sexual play and/or drawings
    • Cruelty to others
    • Cruelty to animals
    • Fire setting
    • Anxious
       

    MENTAL ABUSE -

    Physical Indicators
    • Frequent psychosomatic complaints (nausea, stomachache, headache, etc.)
    • Bed-wetting
    • Self-harm
    • Speech disorders
    Behavioral Indicators
    • Expressing feelings of inadequacy
    • Fearful of trying new things
    • Overly compliant
    • Poor peer relationships
    • Excessive dependence on adults
    • Habit disorders (sucking, rocking, etc.)
    • Eating disorders
       

    NEGLECT -

    Physical Indicators
    • Lack of adequate medical and dental care
    • Often hungry
    • Lack of shelter
    • Child's weight is significantly lower than what is normal for his/her age and gender
    • Developmental delays
    • Persistent (untreated) conditions (e.g. head lice, diaper rash)
    • Exposure to hazards (e.g., illegal drugs, rodenUinsect infestation, mold)
    • Clothing that is dirty, inappropriate for the weather, too small or too large
    Behavioral Indicators 
    • Not registered in school
    • Inadequate or inappropriate supervision
    • Poor impulse control
    • Frequently fatigued
    • “Parentified” behaviors 

     

    Resources