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NCJ Number: 49474 Find in a Library
Title: CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT - STATE REPORTING LAWS, MAY 1978
Author(s): D E BERNINGER; J F FITZPATRICK; J G WECHSLER
Corporate Author: Herner and Co
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 35
Sponsoring Agency: Herner and Co
Washington, DC 20037
National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
Superintendent of Documents, GPO
Washington, DC 20402
US Dept of Health and Human Services
Washington, DC 20447
Contract Number: HEW-105-76-1136
Sale Source: Superintendent of Documents, GPO
Washington, DC 20402
United States of America

National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Document: PDF
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: KEY ELEMENTS OF CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT STATUTES IN EFFECT ON APRIL 30, 1977 ARE SURVEYED, AND REPORTING LAWS, CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES, AND JUDICIAL PROCEEDINGS ARE CONSIDERED.
Abstract: THE FIRST SECTION EXAMINES SEVERAL BASIC ELEMENTS OF THE STATUTES OF THE 50 STATES, THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, AND UNITED STATES TERRITORIES DEALING WITH THE REPORTING OF SUSPECTED OR KNOWN CASES OF CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT. THE ELEMENTS ARE: (1) THE PURPOSE OF THE STATE'S REPORTING LAWS; (2) THE REQUIRED STATE OF MIND OF THE REPORTER; (3) AGE LIMITS OF CHILDREN; AND (4) PERSONS WHO MUST AND MAY REPORT. IMMUNITY FOR REPORTING, FOR THE RETENTION OR REMOVAL OF A CHILD, AND FOR TAKING OF PHOTOGRAPHS AND/OR X-RAYS IS EXAMINED IN RELATION TO THE STATUTES, AS ARE ABROGATION OF PRIVILEGED COMMUNICATIONS, RELIGIOUS IMMUNITY OR EXCLUSION, AND PENALTY FOR FAILURE TO REPORT. MOST STATES REQUIRE IMMEDIATE ACTION IN REPORTING WHICH MUST BE CARRIED OUT ACCORDING TO PRESCRIBED PROCEDURES. IN THE MAJORITY OF STATES, THE REPORT MUST BE FOLLOWED BY MANDATED ACTION TO PROTECT THE CHILD. THERE HAS BEEN A TREND TOWARD ESTABLISHING A CENTRAL REGISTRY OF REPORTED CASES OF CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT. INFORMATION ON INCIDENTS OF CHILD ABUSE CASES CAN ASSIST MEDICAL AND PROTECTIVE SERVICE PERSONNEL IN THE PROPER DIAGNOSIS OF MALTREATMENT AND IN EVALUATING THE EXTENT OF DANGER TO A CHILD. AS A SOURCE OF RESEARCH DATA, CENTRAL REGISTRIES COULD PROVIDE THIS INFORMATION; HOWEVER, THERE HAS BEEN REPORTED FAILURE IN SUCH REGISTRIES TO CARRY OUT THIS ROLE DUE TO INSUFFICIENT STAFF AND SPACE, AND PROBLEMS IN CONFIDENTIALITY AND ACCESS TO RECORDS. MANY JURISDICTIONS REQUIRE STATE OR LOCAL AGENCIES TO OPERATE PUBLICITY AND EDUCATION PROGRAMS FOR THE PUBLIC, STAFF PERSONNEL, AND PERSONS REQUIRED TO REPORT ON CHILD ABUSE AND INTERVENTION AND TREATMENT PROGRAMS. JUDICIAL PROCEEDINGS ARE EXAMINED IN RELATION TO CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT CASES. MOST STATES ALLOW FOR PROTECTIVE CUSTODY OF VICTIMIZED CHILDREN, EITHER BY POLICE OR OTHER AUTHORITIES. FEDERAL LAW REQUIRES THAT THE ABUSED OR NEGLECTED CHILD BE REPRESENTED FOR THE PARENTS AND THE AGENCY, IN THE CASE OF INSTITUTIONAL ABUSE OR NEGLECT, IS NOT WIDELY ESTABLISHED. THE MOST PROMINENT TRENDS IN THE AREA ARE THE EXPANSION OF THE CATEGORIES OF MANDATED REPORTERS AND A BROADENING OF THE CONCEPT OF REPORTABLE ABUSE AND NEGLECT. EXTENSION OF IMMUNITY TO REPORTERS AND THE IMPOSITION OF CRIMINAL AND CIVIL SANCTIONS FOR FAILURE TO REPORT ARE NOW BEING ADOPTED BY MANY JURISDICTIONS. A GROWING NUMBER OF STATES ARE DIRECTING REPORTS TO SOCIAL SERVICE AGENCIES AND MANDATING THE OPERATION OF CENTRAL REGISTRIES. STATES HAVE BEGUN TO MANDATE OR ENCOURAGE THE USE OF MULTIDISCIPLINARY TEAMS. REPORTING PROCEDURES FOR THE STATES AND TERRITORIES ARE LISTED IN A TABLE. APPENDIXES INCLUDE FOOTNOTES FOR TABLES, A BIBLIOGRAPHY, AND A STATUTE COMPILATION BY JURISDICTION. (DAG)
Index Term(s): Child abuse; Judicial process; Juvenile dependency and neglect; State laws
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=49474

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