The California Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Act, California Penal Code §§11164 et seq., requires certain persons to report known or suspected child abuse or neglect. These individuals are known under the law as “Mandated Reporters.”
California Penal Code Section 11165.7 identifies 44 categories of professionals or other individuals who are Mandated Reporters under the law. All Mandated Reporters must sign an acknowledgement of their legal duties and be provided with a copy of Penal Code sections 11165.7, 11166, and 11167. Those employees who are identified by the University as being Mandated Reporters under the law will be provided with the acknowledgment form and copies of the Penal Code sections.
Reporting of child abuse or neglect is required whenever a Mandated Reporter, in his or her professional capacity or within the scope of his or her employment, has knowledge of or observes a child whom the Mandated Reporter knows or reasonably suspects has been the victim of child abuse or neglect.
Reports of child abuse and neglect must be made as follows:
- Immediately or as soon as is practicably possible, make an initial report by telephone to the County of San Diego Child Welfare Services at (800) 344-6000.
- Within 36 hours of receiving the information concerning the incident, prepare and transmit a written report on Form SS8572 (Suspected Child Abuse Report), available at http://ag.ca.gov/childabuse/pdf/ss_8572.pdf.
- Immediately or as soon as is practicably possible, contact USD’s Department of Public Safety (DPS) by telephone at (619) 260-7777.
While the reporting duties are the responsibility of the Mandated Reporter, the Department of Public Safety is available to assist the Mandated Reporter with making the required telephonic and written reports. Note that making a report to the University is not a substitute for making the reports mandated by the Act.
While University policy requires that a report be made to the Department of Public Safety, an individual who reports child abuse or neglect is not required to disclose his/her identity to the Department of Public Safety.
A Mandated Reporter who fails to report an incident of known or reasonably suspected child abuse or neglect as required by law is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail, a fine of $1000, or both.