Note: If this is an emergency, contact your local police emergency number.
Protecting Children from Abuse and Neglect
When a child’s life, health or emotional well being is put at risk by something a person does or fails to do, that child is in need of protection under The Child and Family Services Act. When the action (or failure to act) causes a physical injury, could cause a permanent emotional disability or involves sexual activity – that is abuse.
- protect and ensure the safety of children
- strengthen families to enable children to have nurturing caregivers that provide opportunities to establish life long relationships; and
- engage communities to resolve issues that affect the safety and well-being of children.
Services are provided to communities, families and children. Services include counselling; education; emergency assistance; practical support; treatment; and temporary care, including foster care or residential care, while issues are being resolved, or appropriate permanent care, including adoption, when reunification is no longer possible.
Foster homes are approved and managed by the mandated agencies. Individuals interested in becoming foster parents are encouraged to contact the agency/authority in their area.
You don’t have to know for sure if a child needs protection. If, in your honest judgment, you believe that a child may not be safe, either because of the child’s behaviour or someone else’s, you need to report it.
Whether a child is safe depends on the child’s age and ability to protect him or herself in the situation.
Children under 12 may not be left on their own or in the care of another child who is under 12.