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 Authorssort icon Year Type of Publication
Predicting Suicide Attempts in Young Adults with Histories of Childhood Abuse

Brezo, Jelena
Paris, Joel
Vitaro, Frank
Hébert, Martine
Tremblay, Richard E.
Turecki, Gustavo

2008 Journal article
Critical Injuries and Deaths: Reviews and Investigations Update # 20

British Columbia Representative for Children and Youth

2014 Report
Approach with Caution: Why the Story of One Vulnerable B.C. Youth Can't Be Told

British Columbia Representative for Children and Youth

2016 Report
Paige’s Story: Abuse, Indifference and A Young Life Discarded

British Columbia Representative for Children and Youth

2015 Report
Physical harm and family composition: Maltreated children with developmental delay

Brown, Ivan
Schormans, Ann Fudge

2004 Information sheet
Maltreatment rates in children with developmental delay

Brown, Ivan
Schormans, Ann Fudge

2004 Information sheet
A randomized trial of wraparound facilitation versus usual child protection services

Browne, Dillon T.
Puente-Duran, Sofia
Shlonsky, Aron
Thabane, Lehana
Verticchio, Dominic

2014 Journal article
A randomized trial of wraparound facilitation versus usual child protection services

Browne, Dillon T.
Puente-Duran, Sofia
Shlonsky, Aron
Thabane, Lehana
Verticchio, Dominic

2014 Journal article
Evaluation of a newborn screen for predicting out-of-home placement

Brownell, Marni D.
Chartier, Mariette
Santos, Robert
Au, Wendy
Roos, Noralou P.
Girard, Darlene

2011 Journal article
Academic and social outcomes for high-risk youths in Manitoba

Brownell, Marni D.
Roos, Noralou P.
Macwilliam, Leonard
Leclair, Leanne
Ekuma, Okechukwu
Fransoo, Randy

2010 Journal article