Caring for Our Children (CFOC)

Chapter 10: Licensing and Community Action

10.3 Licensing Agency

10.3.3 Licensing Role with Staff Credentials, Child Abuse Prevention, and ADA Compliance Licensing Agency Role in Communicating the Importance of Reporting Suspected Child Abuse

Content in the STANDARD was modified on 10/16/2018.

Licensing agencies should consistently make public the requirements for and methods of reporting suspected child abuse/neglect. Child care staff and parents/guardians should be aware of the reporting requirements and the procedures for handling reports of child abuse (1,2). Information on how to call and report should be posted in licensed facilities so it is readily available to parents/guardians and staff.


State requirements may differ, but in those states in which reporting suspected abuse is mandatory, child care personnel are usually included among the mandatory reporters. Emotional abuse can be extremely harmful to children, but unlike physical or sexual abuse, it is not adequately defined in most state child abuse reporting laws. State licensing agencies need to report suspected abuse or neglect that they become aware of to the state child protective agency for appropriate follow-up.

Procedures for evaluating allegations of physical and emotional abuse may or may not be the purview of the licensing agency. This responsibility may fall to another agency to which the licensing agency refers child abuse allegations.

RELATED STANDARDS Recognizing and Reporting Suspected Child Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation Immunity for Reporters of Child Abuse and Neglect Preventing and Identifying Shaken Baby Syndrome/Abusive Head Trauma Care for Children Who Have Experienced Abuse/Neglect Facility Layout to Reduce Risk of Child Abuse and Neglect
  1. Child Welfare Information Gateway. Mandated reporting. Accessed June 26, 2018

  2. Child Welfare Information Gateway. Reporting child abuse and neglect. Accessed June 26, 2018


Content in the STANDARD was modified on 10/16/2018.