Recent reports of alleged child sexual abuse at Penn State and Syracuse University, in addition to several incidents in Indiana, provide a good reminder of your duty to report child abuse.
Indiana law requires everyone who suspects child abuse to report it either to police or the local Child Protective Services office. If you don’t, you could be subject to a Class B misdemeanor – a penalty resulting in a jail term of up to 180 days and a fine of up to $1,000. You also could be found liable for medical malpractice.
Keep in mind that reports can be made anonymously and are kept confidential. Persons reporting suspected child abuse are protected from any civil or criminal liability as they are assumed to be acting in good faith.
Forms are available through the Indiana Department of Child Services to help you document child abuse and neglect. Visit in.gov.
Child Protective Services 24-hour hotline number