Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Mandated Reporting

Did you know that in 18 US states and territories anyone who has reason to suspect abuse is required to report it? Find more here. If you want to look up info about one state at a time, or want information about the laws in your state regarding other child welfare issues, try here.

My survey of the document (first link above) shows that foster parents or "foster care workers" are mandated reporters in 21 places, 18 of which are NOT states that require everyone to report. So, to do the math, in 36 US states and territories, foster parents are required to report abuse either because they are foster parents or because they are human beings.

I don't know whether there are consequences for ordinary citizens who fail to report in those 18 places. Mandated reporters, of course, risk losing their licenses if they fail to report.

Just thought you might find that interesting.


  1. In some states, Mandated Reporters even risk fines or jail for not reporting. Of course, the laws get really murky when you start probing the nuances. I've tried to get a straight answer to the question of whether our state's mandated reporter law requires us to report suspected abuse as pertaining to the children we see in our role as foster parents, or whether it requires us to report in all circumstances for any knowledge we have of abuse anywhere. I've talked to several people, including social workers, lawyers, and a judge, and haven't found anyone yet who can answer with anything more authoritative than their own feelings one way or the other.

  2. In NY licensed daycare workers are mandated reports and we risk jail time if we do not report abuse we knew about.

  3. It is truly sad that we need to have laws requiring people to make these reports. You would think in a civilized society that we like to think we have it would go without saying.

  4. In Utah, every adult is a mandated reporter. No excuses for us.


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