A mandated reporter is someone who encounters children through their employment. Mandated reporters are required by the state of California to report any known or suspected instances of child abuse or neglect to the county Child Welfare Services or to a local law enforcement agency (local police/sheriff’s department).
Though everyone should report child abuse, a number of professionals must report abuse or be held liable by law. The specific positions are listed in California Penal Code section 11165.7 and are also included here: Who Is Mandated To Report
As a mandated reporter of child abuse in San Luis Obispo County, if you suspect child abuse or neglect, YOU MUST:
- Immediately call Child Welfare Services (CWS) 24-Hour Child Abuse Reporting Hotline at 805-781-KIDS (5437) or 1-800-834-KIDS
- Complete and file a Suspected Child Abuse Report (SCAR) form # SS8572, located at CA Suspected Child Abuse Report (SCAR) Form 8572. See instructions for completing the SCAR form. The Social Worker you speak with when calling the CWS hotline will inform you where to fax/email the SCAR form.
- Retain a legible copy of the SCAR Report
- YOU are responsible for making this report. DO NOT ALLOW your supervisor/principal to make the report for you or assume because another co-worker has some of the same information that they will make the report.
- Do not attempt to investigate, conduct interviews or interfere with the information you hold.
- Remember that you are to report SUSPECTED abuse – you are not required to have witnessed or have complete proof of the incident. You are obligated by law to report what you observe or what you are told that caused suspicion the child is being physically, sexually or emotionally abused or neglected. When in doubt, call CWS and get their input about the scope of your report.
Child Abuse Mandated Reporter Training/Information: mandatedreporterca.com
What must be reported & how to report: One Page Reporting Tip Sheet
Frequently Asked Questions