What is Child Abuse?
All children have the right to be looked after properly, kept safe and protected from harm.
Child abuse is the ill treatment or neglect of a child by an adult or young person resulting in the child suffering significant harm. Abuse of a child can be sexual, physical, emotional or neglect. Child abuse and neglect happens to children of both genders, of all ages, and in all cultures and social classes.
Things can go wrong for all sorts of reasons in any kind of family at any time, which sometimes means that children suffer as a result.
Most families make sure their children are looked after and protected from danger.
Children of all ages, needs and backgrounds can experience abuse. This could be neglect, emotional, physical or sexual abuse
- Children can experience abuse by someone they or their family know, such as a relative, friend or trusted outsider.
Children may also be sexually, physically or emotionally abused by other children or young people within or outside of their family or outside.
Types of Abuse
Who should I contact?
You can contact Doncaster Council by telephone during office hours 01302 737777 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Out of office hours (after 5pm and before 8.30am weekdays and weekends)
You should contact the Emergency Social Services Team on 01302 796000 or your nearest Police station.
Do I have to give my name?
If you give your name it will be treated confidentially. The most important thing is to tell Doncaster Council or the Police about the children you are worried about. We take all calls about child abuse seriously whether you give your name or not.
What information must I give?
You need to give as much information as possible or at least enough information so that the family can be contacted, for example, names, addresses and date of birth if possible. It is important to say why you are worried about the child.
What will happen next?
A social worker will make enquiries about your concerns. Social workers have a legal duty to follow up any reports of child abuse under the Children Act 1989.
When a social worker makes enquiries about your concerns they may:
Talk to you about your concerns if possible
Talk to other professional people, in confidence, who know the family, for example, Teachers, Health Visitors, and Doctors
Discuss your concerns with the Police
Talk to the parents or carer and the child
Don't assume someone else will be taking action.
Children can not always ask for help themselves.
Do not delay reporting your concerns.
Once the information is gathered a decision is made about the best course of action to ensure the safety and well being of the child.