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 Yearsort icon Type of Publication
The Changing Face of Child Welfare Investigations in Ontario: Ontario Incidence Studies of Reported Child Abuse and Neglect (OIS 1993/1998)

Trocmé, Nico
Fallon, Barbara
MacLaurin, Bruce
Copp, Barbara

2002 Report
Responding to changes in reported child maltreatment: Federal program and policy implications (OIS 1993/1998)

Trcomé, Nico

2002 Presentation
A Literature Review and Annotated Bibliography Focusing on Aspects of Aboriginal Child Welfare in Canada

Bennett, Marlyn
Blackstock, Cindy

2002 Other
Child Neglect: Developmental Issues and Outcomes

Hildyard, Kathryn
Wolfe, David

2002
Liability considerations in child welfare: lessons from Canada

Kanani, Karima
Regehr, Cheryl
Bernstein, Marvin M.

2002 Journal article
The everyday occurrence: Violence in the lives of girls exploited through prostitution

Nixon, Kendra
Tutty, Leslie M.
Downe, Pamela
Gorkoff, Kelly
Ursel, Jane

2002 Journal article
Psychological abuse: Children's invisible suffering

Chamberland, Claire
Laporte, Lise
Lavergne, Chantal
Baraldi, Rosanna

2003 Information sheet
The Economic Costs and Consequences of Child Abuse in Canada

Bowlus, Audra
McKenna, Katherine
Day, Tanis
Wright, David

2003 Report
La Transmission de la Violence Sexuelle: Description du Phénomène et Pistes de Compréhension

Collin-Vézina, Delphine
Cyr, Mireille

2003 Journal article
Maltreatment and Trauma: Tracking the Connections in Adolescence

Scott, Katreena
Wolfe, David
Wekerle, Christine

2003 Journal article