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
Subtypes of exposure to intimate partner violence within a Canadian child welfare sample: Associated risks and child maladjustment

Gonzalez, Andrea
MacMillan, Harriet
Tanaka, Masako
Jack, Susan M.
Tonmyr, Lil

2014 Journal article
Listen to the children: Kids impressions of Who Do You Tell (TM)

Tutty, Leslie M.

2014 Journal article
Disclosure of sexual abuse among youth in residential treatment care: A multiple informant comparison

Milne, Lise
Collin-Vézina, Delphine

2014 Journal article
Risk of maltreatment recurrence after exiting substitute care: Impact of placement characteristics

Hélie, Sonia
Poirier, Marie-Andrée
Turcotte, Daniel

2014 Journal article
Doing the right thing? (Re) Considering risk assessment and safety planning in child protection work with domestic violence cases

Jenney, Angelique
Mishna, Faye
Alaggia, Ramona
Scott, Katreena

2014 Journal article
Why are suspected cases of child maltreatment referred by educators so often unsubstantiated?

King, Colin B.
Scott, Katreena L.

2014 Journal article
Physical abuse among Asian families in the Canadian child welfare system

Lee, Barbara
Rha, Wendy
Fallon, Barbara

2014 Journal article
Maternal foster families provide more stable placements than paternal families

Perry, Gretchen
Daly, Martin
Macfarlan, Shane

2014 Journal article
A survey of adolescents' perceptions of their relationships with nonparental caregivers in group home settings: An attachment perspective

Rabley, Sarah
Preyde, Michèle
Gharabaghi, Kiaras

2014 Journal article
Girls in residential care: From child maltreatment to trauma-related symptoms in emerging adulthood

van Vugt, Eveline
Lanctot, Nadine
Paquette, Genevieve
Collin-Vézina, Delphine
Lemieux, Annie

2014 Journal article