Child Abuse & Maltreatment

  • What is Abuse and Maltreatment?

    Abuse encompasses the most serious injuries and/or risk of serious injuries to children by their caregivers.  An abused child is one whose parent or other person legally responsible for his or her care inflicts serious physical injury upon the child, creates a substantial risk of serious physical injury, or commits a sex offense against the child.  Abuse also includes situations where a parent or other person legally responsible knowingly allows someone else to inflict such harm on a child.

    Maltreatment means that a child's physical, mental or emotional condition has been impaired, or placed in imminent danger or impairment by the failure of the child's parent or other person legally responsible to exercise a minimum degree of care by:
    • failing to provide sufficient food, clothing, shelter, education; or
    • failing to provide proper supervision, guardianship, or medical care (refers to all medical issues); or
    • inflicting excessive corporal punishment, abandoning the child, or misusing alcohol or other drugs to the extent that the child was placed in imminent danger.

    Where Do I Call to Make a Report?
    As soon as you suspect abuse or maltreatment, you must report your concerns your concerns by telephone to the New York Statewide Central Register of Child Abuse and Maltreatment (SCR).  The SCR is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to receive your call.  The timeliness of your call is vital to the timeliness of the intervention by the local department of social services' Child Protective Services (CPS) unit.  You are not required to notify the parents or other persons legally responsible either before or after your call to the SCR.  In fact, in some cases, alerting the parent may hinder the local CPS investigation and adversely affect its ability to assess the safety of the children.

    The telephone numbers to report abuse or maltreatment by a parent, foster care or day care are:

    Mandated Reporter  1-800-635-1522
    Public Hotline 1-800-342-3720
    For Abuse by Institutional Staff: