Skip Top Navigation
image: Click here to return to the Yuba County home page.
image: Yuba County orchards in bloom.

Children's Services Division

5730 Packard Ave., Suite 100, (P.O. Box 2320) Marysville, CA 95901

24-Hour Emergency Hotline: (530) 749-6288




Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) About Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect

All citizens have a responsibility to protect those who cannot protect themselves. Members of the general pubic may report suspected abuse and neglect if they choose. California state law, however, mandates that workers in certain professions must make reports if they have reasonable cause to suspect abuse or neglect. These people are called mandated reporters and they are crucial link in the system to protect California's most vulnerable citizens.

 

1. Who must report? (See Mandated Reporters)

2. Who do I contact if I suspect Child Abuse?

3. How do I respond to a child who reports abuse to me?

4. What information do I need to report?

5. Will My report be confidential?

6. Can I be sued if I report?

7. What happens after I report?

8. When is a child taken into protective custody?

9. When are juvenile court hearings necessary?

10. What about criminal prosecution?

11. What is the DOJ Child Abuse Central Index?

12. Who do I contact for more information on child abuse and neglect?

13. Can I spank my kids?

14. How old can a child be before they can be left unsupervised at home?

 

 

 

 

1. Who must report? (See Mandated Reporters)

2. Who do I contact if I suspect child abuse?

Call 24-hour Intake line Tel: (530) 749-6288.

3. How do I respond to a child who reports abuse to me?

Tell the child that you are going to contact people who can help.

4. What information do I need to report?

If possible report names and addresses of the child and parent; the child's age; the type and extent of abuse; the date and time.

5. Will my report be confidential?

Your identity will remain confidential to the full extent allowable by law. If court action is initiated you may be called as a witness or the court may order that your name to be disclosed.

 Back to Top

6. Can I be sued if I report?

California law provides that anyone participating in good faith in the making of a report of a child abuse and who has reasonable grounds for making the report, shall have immunity.

7. What happens after I report?

Children's Services follows the same process for every child abuse referral. Every referral is evaluated.

8. When is a child taken into protective custody?

When a child is at imminent risk or harm, Children's Services must work to develop a plan which will assure a child's safety.

9. When are juvenile court hearings necessary?

When children are removed from their parent's custody.

10. What about criminal prosecution?

Suspected Child Abuse Report (SCAR) is submitted to Law Enforcement agencies and to District Attorney's Office. Criminal prosecution is at the sole discretion of the District Attorney's Office.

 Back to Top

11. What is the DOJ Child Abuse Central Index?

The index reflects reports of investigations completed by the child protection agencies, and is used to aid with investigations and prosecutions. This information from the index is only provided to:

  • Designated social welfare agencies who license for daycare, foster care or to be an employee in a licensed daycare facility.

  • Designated social welfare agencies who are responsible for the placement of children in an out-of-home setting.

  • Designated social welfare agencies who are responsible for adoptions.

 

12. Who do I contact for more information on child abuse and neglect?

Contact Children's Services at the 24-hour Intake Line (530) 749-6288.

 

13. Can I spank my kids?

The CDSS Manual of Policy & Procedures notes that the child is not defined as in need of service, or to be a person described by WIC 300(a) through (j) based solely on the existence of the following condition:

Div. 31-125.111 -- "..... reasonable and age-appropriate spanking to the buttocks where there is no evidence of serious physical injury."

In other words, you may spank your child as long as it is reasonable, age appropriate and does not leave any physical evidence such as a bruise, red mark, welt, etc.

While it is legally allowable to spank your child as a form of discipline, many studies over the years have shown it is a very ineffective form of discipline.

Raising our children is the single most responsible task which we will ever be given in our lives. All parents have the same fundamental wish for their children: that they become healthy, happy, productive, and responsible members of the society.

In today's fast paced environment, families are faced with enormous challenges to remain intact in addition to providing a safe home environment. Children's Services partners with local parents, Family Resource Centers, and community services partners to empower our children to explore their potential, fully utilize their special gifts, and contribute to society.

Back to Top

14. How old can a child be before he/she can be left unsupervised at home?

In California, there is not a legal age at which a minor can be left unsupervised. Age in and of itself is not a reliable guide. There are several additional factors that influence whether it is appropriate to leave a child alone, even for short periods of time.

Parents should use good judgment in deciding if their child(ren) is mature enough to be left without adult supervision. It is important to realize that children left in self-care could be at a higher risk for injuries.

Below are a few questions that may assist you in making the decision if your child is ready and able to stay home safely without supervision:

  • Does your child know what to do in case of a house fire?

  • Does your child know what to do when a stranger is at the front door asking them to open the door?

  • Does your child know in what situations should they call 911 and what information to have ready (name, address, nature of emergency, etc.)

  • Does your child know how to address a person calling on the phone requesting to speak with you?

  • Does your child know whom to contact if he/she have questions, but are not in crisis at that moment such as another adult family member, trusted friend, or neighbor?

  • Does your child know how to take immediate care of serious wound until professional help arrives?

  • Does your child know how to prepare a simple meal? Does it involve using the stove? Does your child know what to do if an oil fire started on the stovetop?

  • Do you regularly practice acting out the above situations with your child so that your child and you gain confidence in their ability to consistently react safety and appropriately to the situations?

Safety tips:

  • Keep a list of all emergency numbers (doctor, hospitals, police, fire department, poison control center, EMS) and the phone number of a trusted friend or neighbor posted on each phone.

  • Show the child where the first aid kit is located and how to use the items in it.

  • Tell your child where you will be, when you plan to return home and how you can be reached. Leaving a beeper or cell phone on when you are away may help put you and your child more at ease.

 

Congratulations for taking the time to read these questions and answers on our website. It is evidence of your interest and value you place in on being/becoming the best parent that you can be.

Back to Top

 

 

 

 


Children's Services Division • 5730 Packard Ave., Suite 100, Marysville, (P.O. Box 2320) CA 95901 • 24-Hour Emergency Hotline (530) 749-6288 

 

©2009 County of Yuba, CA