a director of a youth custody (containment) centre
custody centres are legislated by the Young Offenders Act as places
of detainment and detention. When abuse or neglect is believed to have
occurred in a youth custody centre, or while participating in centre
activities, the child protection social worker will notify the director of
the youth custody centre.
case comes to the attention of an employee at the youth custody centre,
the employee must report it to a child protection social worker and to the
director of the youth custody centre.
director of the youth custody centre is responsible for taking the
necessary steps to ensure that children in the facility are safe. It
should be noted that children cannot be removed from the youth custody
centre unless permitted by provisions of the Young Offenders Act
and relevant provincial legislation.
If you suspect that a child is being coerced to perform sexual activities
or may be involved in pornography, contact the police immediately.
Children in residential programs are particularly vulnerable as are
children living on the street. Children may be coerced into providing
sexual services in exchange for a place to sleep, food, a shower or for
money. It is the responsibility of the police and a child protection
social worker to determine the type of intervention necessary and whether
criminal offences have occurred. Children involved in the sex trade are
victims of sexual abuse and not criminals.
behaviour between children
Abusive behaviour between children, including sexual behaviour, generally
involves an imbalance of power. For example, one child may be
significantly older than the other, or one of the children may be more
vulnerable for other reasons.
kind of behaviour has many different causes and occurs along a continuum
of severity. Responses to the children's behaviour will therefore vary. A
sensitive, collaborative approach and careful analysis by service
providers, parents and the community are key components of any effective
decision as to whether to report to a child protection social worker is
made on a case-by-case basis. There is no need to report:
play or exploration between children of similar ages;
altercations or aggression between children; and
activity that is in the bounds of normal childhood behaviour.
to be considered when deciding to report include:
of the behaviour;
of a power imbalance between the children;
behaviour resulted in harm to the child(ren); and
and ability of the involved children's parents to respond
deciding whether to report to a child protection social worker, ask
children behaving inappropriately for their age?;
are they being
coercive or exploitive?;
behaviour impulsive or premeditated?;
is there a
pattern of domination, force, aggression (actual or threatened) or
intimidation which endangers the physical or psychological
well-being of another child?
child protection social worker may contact the parents of the affected
children (both abused and aggressor) to decide whether their behaviour is
an indicator of abuse or neglect. The child protection social worker may
determine whether the parent(s) will take appropriate action to
prevent further abuse; and
appropriate, speak to the children with the consent of the parent(s).
child protection social worker consults with others involved with the
child to decide whether an investigation into the child's need for
protection should commence. A report will be made to police if it is
believed that a criminal offence may have occurred or is occurring.
child protection social worker shares the results of his or her assessment
with the parent(s), when appropriate, and with the person in authority
where the abusive behaviour occurred. It is important for the child
protection social worker to work with other service providers to develop
and implement a community safety plan, where appropriate, and to ensure
that counselling services are arranged as needed for the affected
child(ren) and family/families.
should be called if a child needs immediate police assistance or if a
criminal offence has occurred or is occurring.
child under 12
Where a child under 12 has killed, assaulted or endangered another person,
police must report to a child protection social worker. Where police
receive a report of a child under 12 who has committed a less serious
offence, they may report the circumstances to a child protection social
a child discloses past abuse to you, you must report it to a child
protection social worker.
child discloses past abuse to you, you must report it to a child
protection social worker.
adult who was abused as a child may be in a position to know if their
abuser could be abusing other children. If they have reason to believe
this is happening, they have a legal duty to report this belief to a child
protection social worker.
service provider who has reason to believe that a child has been or is
likely to be abused by an alleged past abuser also has a duty to report
this belief to a child protection social worker.
working with adults who were abused as children inform them of their legal
duty to report any current belief that a child has been or is likely to be
physically or sexually abused. It may not be easy for them to report and
they may need your support.
addition to receiving the report, a child protection social worker or any
service provider can advise the adult of the services or remedies that may
be available through the police, the Criminal Injury Compensation Program,
victim services and civil litigation.
Under the Coroners Act, you must notify a coroner or police if you
become aware of a child fatality that is sudden and unexpected. Most
reports under the act are made by police and hospital personnel. However,
other individuals may call a coroner if they are not sure whether a report
has been made, or if they want to know the status of the coroner's
protection social worker who becomes aware of the death of a child in
care, or a child otherwise known to them, files a report under the Child,
Family and Community Service Act to the director, who in turn notifies
the chief coroner and the Children's Commission.
Children's Commission reviews all child fatalities and investigates those
it determines warrant investigation. The commission, in consultation with
a multidisciplinary team, may make recommendations about services
delivered to the child or their family, or about any other issue related
to the death of the child. These recommendations are forwarded to relevant
ministries, agencies and individuals, and are outlined in public reports.
to Report or Knowingly Making a False Report
people don't make a report because they think they need proof to back it
up. This is not true. All that is required is reason to believe that a
child has been, is, or is likely to be physically harmed, sexually abused,
sexually exploited, or in need of protection.
person making the report is not responsible for determining whether the
abuse and/or neglect actually happened or is likely to happen. That is the
job of the child protection social worker.
reporting can be the beginning of a positive change, and can keep the
child and perhaps other children from harm. Reporting can save lives.
to promptly report suspected abuse or neglect to a child protection social
worker is a serious offence under the Child, Family and Community
Service Act. So is knowingly making a false report. Both offences
carry a maximum penalty of a $10,000 fine, or six months in jail, or both.
No action for damages may be brought against a person for reporting
information under the Child, Family and Community Service Act
unless the person knowingly reported false information.
child protection social worker learns that someone may have failed to
report child abuse or neglect, or has knowingly made a false report, they
assess this information. If they believe there has been a failure to
report, or that false information was reported, they inform the police,
who may investigate and recommend charges under the Child, Family and
Community Service Act.
Child Abuse and Neglect
child protection social worker, police and any other person involved in an
investigation (e.g. the medical health officer or the superintendent of
schools) all share responsibility for ensuring the safety of children.
They must immediately clarify the roles and responsibilities of each
participant, collaborate and cooperate throughout the investigation(s),
since an investigation into reported abuse or neglect has to be done
are several types of investigations related to child abuse or neglect.
They may occur simultaneously, requiring a cooperative approach. An
agency's role and responsibilities will vary, depending on the purpose of
complete copy of this report go to:
Reporting Child Abuse