Grand Jury Report: Training City Personnel In Reporting Child Abuse

The Contra Costa Grand Jury has released a report (available here) which recommends that all public entity employees and volunteers be trained to recognize and report suspected child abuse.    The report's summary states:

Multiple lawsuits alleging child abuse, and the failure to report suspected instances of the same, have revealed that many employees of the public entities, including those of the cities, do not understand their duties to identify and report suspected or known instances of child abuse.   This failure is due, in large part, to inadequate training of employees, and other personnel, in their legal obligations as “mandated reporters”.

To help protect children from child abuse, and cities from liability for failing to report suspected cases of abuse, each city should establish and implement a program to train all “mandated reporters”, including volunteers and other personnel who have direct contact or supervision of children, in abuse reporting guidelines.   The training programs should be conducted on an annual basis and each city should implement a system to verify that employees and other personnel who are mandated reporters have successfully completed the training.     

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