Order Mandated Reporting of Child Abuse

Order Mandated Reporting of Child Abuse
Mandated Reporting of Child Abuse
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Mandated Reporting of Child Abuse
Mandated reporting of child abuse is meant to shield children from the problem. Mandated reporting laws cross disciplines (counseling, psychology, medicine, nursing, education, etc.). Some professionals have criticized these laws on the basis of interfering with their professional relationship with children. Additionally, there are several legal and ethical dilemmas associated with mandated reporting laws, further complicating the professionals’ practice.
Order Mandated Reporting of Child Abuse
Mandated reporting laws are very necessary requirements for a system to protect children. The efforts to find better ways to protect children against maltreatment and neglect by the adults on whom they are dependent began actively during the 1950s. Research by radiologists and pediatricians during the 1950s produced evidence of extensive physical child abuse and killing cases by their caretakers (Duncan, 1994). Kempe et al (1962) , in “Battered-Child Syndrome”, a historic and landmark study, produced valuable empirical evidence on the severity of physical child abuse occurrences by child’s caretakers. The findings in Kempe et al (1962) raised public concerns with the burgeoning child abuse and neglect cases, leading to the quick development and enactment of mandatory reporting of child maltreatment laws in every state in the US (Duncan, 1994).
Specifically, the CAPTA (Federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act) directs each State to develop and enact procedures or provisions for mandating specific [group of] individuals to report either suspected or known child abuse and neglect cases. Thus, all USA States, and the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands have statutory provisions mandating child abuse reporting by certain professional and other persons to the authorities, with the laws also addressing institutional responsibility in making reports, reporter’s identity’s confidentiality, and report-making standards (Child Welfare Information Gateway, 2019). The mandated child abuse reporting laws have had a positive impact in the fight against child maltreatment, especially by increasing the number of cases being reported to the authorities for further remedial actions. For instance, thanks to the mandated child abuse reporting law’s enactment in every State, the number of reports experienced a meteoric rise nationally from 10,000 in 1962 to almost over 3 million in 1992. One effect of this positive development
Order Mandated Reporting of Child Abuse
is that it has led to the child welfare agencies’ unanticipated transformation into protective services agencies for children. Furthermore, nationwide data also suggests and attributes substantial reduction in child abuse-related fatalities to increased reporting (Duncan, 1994).
However, the mandated child abuse reporting laws have also given rise to several practical challenges to the professionals. Personally, caring professionals cannot ignore child’s possible abuse and neglect, and legally, the failure of mandated reporters to file cases of suspected or actual child abuse risks attracting punitive actions to themselves – including a fine and civil liability claims. It is legally preferable for mandated reporters to notify alleged abuses to protective agencies as they are immune to erroneous reports. However, mandated reports may pose some practical challenges for professionals, including the desire for them to remain uninvolved from such cases to avoid angry clients or legal entanglements (Bourne, 1991). Again, the tension between protection a respondent’s privacy rights and the legally mandated reporting of child abuse confronts the researchers and professionals with a counter-intuitive and counter-productive dilemma, i.e. while it is unethical to breach confidentiality; it illegal not to make mandated reports (Farberman

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