Child Abuse

 

 

ABOUT CHILD ABUSE & NEGLECT 

 

If you suspect child abuse in your community, please contact the following:
Intake Hotline: State of Utah Division of Child of Family Services    1.855.323.3237 

In Utah, everyone over the age of 18 is a mandated reporter.

 

Child Abuse in Utah

 

Each year, the Division of Child and Family Services and Child Protective Services receive over 38,000 reports of suspected child abuse or neglect in our communities.

Over 25,000 of these children were investigated as potential victims.

Each year, over 10,000 children in Utah become part of the child welfare court system due to abuse, neglect, or abandonment through no fault of their own.

 

Defining Child Abuse & Neglect

 

What if I’m not absolutely sure abuse is occurring?

Unfortunately, as much as 70 percent of child abuse goes unreported, and a child tells an average of seven adults that they are being abused or neglected before a report is made. Every delay in reporting suspected abuse or neglect increases the likelihood that abuse will become more serious, or even deadly, and that the perpetrator will abuse additional children. By trusting your own senses, common sense and instincts, and calling the hotline whenever you suspect a child has been harmed or is at risk of harm, you can ensure a child is safe and that her family is getting the help they need.

To prevent unnecessary investigations, hotline calls are screened by trained social workers to determine whether they warrant investigation for abuse or neglect. Of the more than one million hotline calls received over the past four years, only about one in four resulted in a formal report and an investigation. Many of the calls that do not lead to investigations are often directed to referrals that connect families with community-based programs aimed at preventing abuse.

In most cases where abuse or neglect are indicated, DCFS is able to provide services to the family that allow the child to remain in the home safely, provided the abuse or neglect is reported to the department soon enough to intervene.

 

Learn how child abuse and neglect are defined in Federal legislation and State laws, and find resources that distinguish between discipline and abuse.

 

Visit http://www.rules.utah.gov/publicat/code/r512/r512-080.htm

Visit http://www.childwelfare.gov/can/defining/ for more information.

Learn more about the state of Utah’s children at http://www.casey.org/communities/?location=ut