Topic 4: Responding to Suspected Child Abuse and Neglect

Talking With a Child

As a service provider working with children, you often have relationships with them, putting you in a position of trust. For this reason, you may find yourself in a situation where a child discloses to you, or you may see something that makes you suspect a child has been or is likely to be abused or neglected.

If you find yourself in either of these situations, it is important to honour the child and remember that your role is to report to a child welfare worker.

There may be some situations where you want to seek further information before deciding whether to make a report. For example, you may wish to clarify a statement the child has made, or to inquire about a child’s provisions such as lunch or clothes.

Do not interview the child. It is the child welfare worker’s job to determine whether child abuse or neglect has taken, or is taking, place and to decide on the appropriate action to take.