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
Child Maltreatment and HPA Axis Dysregulation: Relationship to Major Depressive Disorder and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in Females

Shea, Alison
Walsh, Christine
MacMillan, Harriet
Steiner, Meir

2005 Journal article
Family Violence Research: Lessons Learned and Where From Here?

MacMillan, Harriet
Wathen, C. Nadine

2005 Journal article
Treatment of Child Neglect: A Systematic Review

Allin, Heather
Wathen, C. Nadine
MacMillan, Harriet

2005 Journal article
Efficacy of a Group Therapy for Sexually Abused Adolescent Girls

Tourigny, Marc
Hébert, Martine
Daigneault, Isabelle
Simoneau, Ann Claude

2005 Journal article
New Brunswick Child Victims of Abuse and Neglect Protocols

The Government of New Brunswick

2005 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
Single mothers of children with developmental delay: Maltreatment and life stressors

Schormans, Ann Fudge
Brown Ivan

2004 Information sheet
False Allegations of Abuse and Neglect

Knott, Theresa
Trocmé, Nico
Bala, Nicholas

2004 Information sheet
Injuries caused by child abuse and neglect

Montgomery, Victor
Trocmé, Nico

2004 Information sheet