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Reporting Suspected Child Abuse or Neglect by Telephone. Call 1-800-4ACHILD (1-800-422-4453). All reports can be kept anonymous, although you may be encouraged to give your name.
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Submit a report in writing. This is not the preferred way, but a letter written to the social services agency will be taken seriously. However, unless you know someone you can address it to, it will go to the central mail room and may be significantly delayed in getting to someone with authority to act. However, it is completely anonymous.
If you believe a child is being abused or maltreated, you can anonymously report it to child protective services, or CPS, by calling the hotline in your state or county. If you believe a child is in imminent danger, you can call 911, which you can also do anonymously, if necessary.
5. Decide if you want to remain anonymous. You may not want to give CPS your name out of fear of being involved in the investigation of child abuse. Perhaps you are afraid of the abuser. Or you may have been told of the abuse by a child and do not want the child to get in trouble for having told someone.
If you would rather make an anonymous report, you can state as such or you can provide an alias or false name. However, regardless of the name you provide, you should provide a working telephone number—this will allow social services to contact you again if they need any additional information to help them investigate your report.
What happens when you report someone to CPS? If CPS determines that there may be abuse or neglect, a report will be registered, and CPS will begin an investigation. CPS will probably also make a report to the police who may conduct their own investigation. The investigation will usually occur within 24 hours of a report.
Singh: The NY State Office of Children and Family Services believes they need to protect anonymous reporting, but they don’t. Many states have confidential reporting where you have to give your name and basic information when you make a report.
Unfortunately, false CPS reports are filed every day. In fact, the majority of reports taken by the Department of Human Services are not supported. False reports are filed by friends, family members, educators, and even acquaintances who might make snap judgments or misinterpret a situation. In some cases, individuals do it out of anger or spite.
When CPS receives a report, the CPS worker reviews the information and determines if an investigation is needed. The CPS worker may talk with the family, the child, or others to help determine what is making the child unsafe. The CPS worker can help parents or other caregivers get services, education, or other assistance. (Back to top)
Answer. Many states accept anonymous reports of alleged child abuse and neglect. It is important to note, however, that all states are required to preserve the confidentiality of all child maltreatment reports, except in certain limited circumstances (see Disclosure of Confidential Records ).