What is Mandating Reporting?
Mandated reporting is the early recognition of child maltreatment with the goal of preventing further abuse from occurring. Many mandated reporters have professional relationships with children that make it possible for children to disclose abuse or for the mandated reporter to identify maltreatment.
Child serving professionals and volunteers may suspect child abuse or have a child disclose abuse to them on site. Oftentimes, barriers like fear of reporting, the inability to recognize all forms of child maltreatment, and vague organizational policies may prevent professionals from making a report of child maltreatment.
Mandated Reporters are child-serving professionals, including volunteers at child-serving organizations, and are all required by Georgia law to report suspected child abuse. The majority of child abuse reports in the state tend to be made by mandated reporters, making them the first line of defense. The law protects and prevents further abuse and its adverse effects as well as bring protective services into the home with the hopes of improving the child’s welfare and preserve the family when possible. Download a Fact Sheet on Child Maltreatment Statistics in GA.
Who is a Mandated Reporter?
Georgia law designates specific professionals as Mandated Reporters of abuse and neglect. Here is a list of those professions who have been designated.
How to Make a Report?
For Mandated Reporters - reports must be made within 24 hours by phone or electronically. For any other adult not working with kids but suspect child abuse and want to make a report in good faith:
- DFCS’ centralized intake is available 24/7, 1-855-GACHILD (1-855-422-4453)
- OR you can report online (requires online training prior to report)
- If the child is in immediate danger, report to law enforcement (911); sometimes calling both 911 and DFCS may be necessary
- Remember to comply with any internal workplace protocols.
How to learn more?
Take an in-depth facilitator-led Mandated Reporting training by Prevent Child Abuse (PCA) Georgia gives participants the ability to recognize, react, and report child maltreatment, along with a scenario practice. The GCCA Prevention Team are authorized trainers. The training can be provided in 1 1/2, 2, or 3 hours.
- Identify which groups of children may be at higher risk of being abused or neglected
- Identify physical and behavioral indicators child abuse and neglect in Georgia
- Understand how the laws around mandated reporting affect mandated reporters
- Describe the process for handling a disclosure of abuse
- Describe the mandated reporter’s role and necessary steps in reporting suspected abuse and neglect
Click here for a full listing of who is considered a Mandated Reporter in Georgia and Community Resources. Visit PCA GA's website to find great downloadable resources helpful for Mandated Reporters and child-serving agencies. It is OUR job as mandated reporters and adults to ensure the safety of children whenever possible.
Access the Workshop for Individuals and Organizations:
- Contact our Prevention Staff for more information; call 678-904-2880 or email us.