51A Online Mandated Reporter Training:
Recognizing & Reporting Child Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation
As of February 2012, mandated reporters have additional reporting obligations under Massachusetts' new human trafficking law.
While anyone who suspects a child is being abused, neglected or exploited can and should file a 51A Report with the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families ("DCF"), professionals who have been designated as mandated reporters are required by law to do so.
Because they are often the first adults to see signs of or be told about maltreatment, mandated reporters play an integral part in the protection of our children.
As of January 2010, mandated reporters who are professionally licensed by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts are required by statute to complete a training, which teaches them how to recognize and report suspected child abuse and neglect.
This online training was designed by the Middlesex Children's Advocacy Center in collaboration with the Middlesex District Attorney's Office to help mandated reporters who work in Middlesex County and who work with children who reside in Middlesex County:
- Understand their legal obligations as mandated reporters
- Recognize possible signs and symptoms of child abuse, neglect and exploitation
- Know how to respond to a child who discloses abuse
- Know how to file a 51A Report
- Understand what happens after a 51A Report is filed
The structure of this self-paced training is as follows:
- Why is Mandated Reporting Important?
- Who is a Mandated Reporter?
- Duties of a Mandated Reporter
- Protections for Mandated Reporters
- Criminal Penalties for Failing to File
- Recognizing Child Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation
- Child Neglect
- Physical Child Abuse
- Sexual Child Abuse
- Child Exploitation
- Physical Dependence Upon an Addictive Drug at Birth
- Responding to Disclosures of Abuse
- How to File a 51A Report
- What Happens After a 51A Report is Filed
- Conclusion/Certificate of Completion
The training takes approximately 30 minutes to complete.