To Report Suspected Abuse Call DCYF at (800) 894-5533 - For Emergencies Dial 911

Keeping Children Safe

Body Safety

Talk often and early to children about body safety.

It is part of an ongoing dialogue from their early years through their teens. Create an atmosphere of trust and openness.

The DO’s
  • Girl-on-Swing_SmallDO talk about body parts that are “private” and those that are not private.
  • DO use appropriate language when naming body parts.
  • DO talk about who is allowed to touch a child’s private parts, such as a doctor as part of an exam or parents and caregivers who might assist with toileting or bathing.
  • DO talk about how it is not okay for anyone else to touch private parts, including other children.
  • DO have a plan with your child in the event someone touches them or they feel uncomfortable about they way someone touched their body. Be sure there is a person they will tell.
  • DO become familiar with the signs of sexual abuse.

For more information on teaching children about body safety, please download our brochure.

If you suspect abuse, report it to the appropriate authorities:

  • The Division for Children Youth and Families (1-800-894-5533)
  • And/or your local police department

Ask for help, get support for yourself.

Handling Disclosures

It is important to remain calm when a child discloses abuse. It is your responsibility once you KNOW to TELL DCYF and/or local law enforcement. Be honest and truthful with the child. It is okay not to have all the answers. Show your love and support so they KNOW they are not alone.

 

KNOW & TELL

If a child tells you that he or she has been hurt or you are concerned that a child may be the victim of any type of abuse or neglect, you are required to call the Division for Children, Youth and Families (DCYF) Central Intake Unit at:

Telephone: (800) 894-5533
Hours: 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM (Monday - Friday)

Call your local police department with urgent child abuse or neglect reports during DCYF non-work hours (between 4:30 PM and 8:00 AM or on weekends and holidays).

Proof of abuse and neglect is not required to make a report and you may report anonymously.