1. Who is a Mandated Reporter? 
  2. Responsibility of Agencies Employing Mandated Reporters
  3. Types and Indicators of Abuse

Who is a Mandated Reporter?        [Back to Top]

Any person who in the scope of their profession has a legal duty to report suspected or known child abuse or neglect and who can be held liable for not making a report. (PC 11166 (a))  Reasonable suspicion: objectively reasonable, based upon facts, training and experience.  If you suspect, report.

 Responsibility of Agencies Employing Mandated Reporters        [Back to Top]

Since 1985, all employers are required to: Inform their employees •Advise them of reporting responsibilities. Provide and retain signed acknowledgement statement. Inform of confidentiality rights (P.C. 11165.5 [a] ). Employers are strongly encouraged to provide their employees with training.  Volunteers are not mandated reporters.   
 Types and Indicators of Abuse   [Back to Top]
Physical Abuse   B) Sexual Abuse    C) Neglect   D) Emotional

 Physical Abuse: physical injury inflicted by other than accidental means upon a child. Including cruel or inhuman corporal punishment (P.C. 11165.6)

Physical Indicators: 

Unexplained or improbable explanation for fractures, lacerations, bruising, facial injuries, burns
Bruising or fractures in different stages of healing
Burns: cigarette, rope, scalding water, iron, radiator •Infected burns, indicating delay in seeking treatment

Behavioral Indicators: 

  • Hostile, aggressive, verbally abusive, destructive
  • Fearful, withdrawn, self-destructive
  • Attempts to hide injuries Frequent absence from school
  • Difficulty sitting or walking
  • Wary of physical contact with adults
  • Clingy, forms indiscriminate attachments

Sexual Abuse:  including both sexual assault and sexual exploitation. (P.C. 11165.1) The child has been sexually abused or is at risk of being sexually abused by a parent, member of the household, or someone known/not known to the family.

Physical Indicators:

  • Physical trauma or irritation to the anal/genital area
    Lesions around mouth or genitals
  • Abdominal pain, painful urination/defecation
    Difficulty walking or sitting •Sexually transmitted diseases

Behavioral Indicators:

  • Child discloses inappropriate touching by an adult
  • Sexualized behavior: beyond years of maturity, early pregnancy
  • Excessive curiosity about sexual matters or genitalia
  • Eating disorders
  • Poor hygiene or excessive bathing

Neglect:  Includes both acts or omissions harming or threatening to harm the child’s health or welfare. (P.C. 11165.2). The child has suffered or is at risk of suffering serious physical harm or illness as a result of a parent’s failure or inability to provide the child with adequate food, shelter, clothing, and/or medical treatment.  This may be due to a parent’s mental illness or substance abuse.

General: Inadequate food, clothing, shelter, medical care and supervision

Severe: Includes the above, Malnutrition, Medically diagnosed non-organic failure to thrive

Physical Indicators:

  • unmet medical / dental needs
  • Chronic tardiness or excessive absences
  • poor hygiene, unsanitary home conditions
    dirty clothes, inappropriate clothes for the weather
  • lack of supervision
    Behavioral Indicators:
  • poor social interaction

Emotional Abuse:  Willful harming or injuring of a child or the endangering of the person or health of a child, including inflicting or permitting unjustifiable physical pain or mental suffering (P.C. 11165.3)

Behavioral Indicators: Evidenced by states of being or behavior including, but not limited to-

    • severe anxiety
    • depression
    • withdrawal or untoward aggressive behavior toward self or others
      PC 11166.05 Any mandated reporter may report any child who is suffering serious emotional damage or is at substantial risk of suffering serious emotional damage.