Child Abuse & Neglect

Child abuse and neglect include acts of commission or omission by a parent or other caregiver that result in harm, potential for harm, or threat of harm to a child.  The five primary forms of maltreatment are physical abuse, sexual abuse, physical neglect, emotional maltreatment and exposure to domestic violence.

For a document that outlines definitions of frequently used terms in child abuse and neglect research, see the page with the glossary of social work and child maltreatment related terms.

You can get more information on the signs of child maltreatment from the Family Violence Initiative, operated by the Department of Justice of Canada. You can also contact Kid’s Help Phone at 1-800-668-6868 for further information.

If you suspect a child is being abused or neglected, or are looking for information about services for children or families experiencing difficulties you can contact your local child welfare authority. Click here to find the local child authority agency in your province or territory. Please visit our FAQs section to learn more about child abuse and neglect.

Title Authors Year Type of Publication
Quebec Indicidence Study 2008 (EIQ-2008): Final Report

Hélie, Sonia
Turcotte, Daniel
Trocmé, Nico
Tourigny, Marc

2012 Report
Quebec Indicidence Study 2008 (EIQ-2008): Executive Summary

Hélie, Sonia
Turcotte, Daniel
Trocmé, Nico
Tourigny, Marc

2012 Report
Kiskisik Awasisak: Remember the Children. Understanding the Overrepresentation of First Nations Children in the Child Welfare System

Sinha, Vandna
Trocmé, Nico
Fallon, Barbara
MacLaurin, Bruce
Fast, Elizabeth
Prokop, Shelley Thomas
et al.

2011 Report
Efficacy of neglect interventions for Indigenous children, families and communities

McGinn, Carrie Anna 
Damasse, Jean 

2014 Report
Critical Injuries and Deaths: Reviews and Investigations Update # 20

British Columbia Representative for Children and Youth

2014 Report
Child abuse and mental disorders in Canada

Afifi, Tracie O.
MacMillan, Harriet L.
Boyle, Michael
Taillieu, Tamara
Cheung, Kristene 
Sareen, Jitender 

2014 Journal article
Urgent Protection versus Chronic Need: Clarifying the Dual Mandate of Child Welfare Services across Canada

Trocmé, Nico
Kyte, Alicia
Sinha, Vandna
Fallon, Barbara

2014 Information sheet
Physical abuse and physical punishment in Canada

Jud, Andreas
Trocmé, Nico
 

2013 Information sheet
Glossary of Social Work Terms and Child Maltreatment Related Concepts

Sturtridge, Michelle

2013 Other
Child and family poverty in Canada: Implications for child welfare research

de Boer, Kaila
Rothwell, David W.
Lee, Christopher

2013 Information sheet