The Definition of Child Abuse: This is the hardest page I have written.
Before we get into the definition of child abuse you need to know that when you are a registered child care provider, it is mandated that you become a Mandatory Child Abuse reporter. Therefore you will need know the definition of child abuse, what signs of physical child abuse and emotional child abuse look like when you are providing care for young children. Sometime, we are the only ones to help these children!
I have to tell you, this is the hardest page for me to write. It sickens me to think of anyone hurting a child. I personally have witnessed physical child abuse and emotional child abuse...I worked in a preschool/daycare center that was a safe haven for children in protective custody. Inside the definition of child abuse you would see these little helpless and innocent babies full of bruises, black eyes, burns (and yes, we were informed of sexual abuse). You not only want to cry, but you want to take them home with you and save them from the horrors the awful monsters were doing to them.
The effects of child abuse are devastating for a child's emotional and physical well being. It needs to be stopped and it is your job, if you see the signs of physical child abuse or emotional child abuse or neglect, to report any suspicions. When you do report any suspected abuse, it is confidential and your name is not revealed. I encourage you, if you are not registered, to take the training as soon as possible so you will learn the definition of child abuse in your state. Why???
Because physical child abuse and emotional child abuse can happen in ANY home. A family's background or money status does not matter.
Here are some examples and descriptions to help you in the definition of child abuse in order to give you some valuable information about signs of physical abuse.
If you witness any of these signs of physical child abuse, sexual child abuse, neglect or emotional child abuse you should suspect that the child could be in trouble.
Get to know the definition of child abuse because you must report your suspicions to your local DHS, or the Department of Social Services, Child Protective Services or the Division of Family and Children's Services.
THIS PHONE CALL MUST BE MADE! You do not have to prove it happened nor do you have to investigate. Your identity is protected and confidential, and you are immune from liability when you report in good faith.
I sincerely hope this is a situation that you NEVER have to experience; but if you do, it is your responsibility to take action for the child's sake.
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