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 Publicationsort icon
Indigenous Resilience, Connectedness and Reunification - From Root Causes to Root Solutions: A Report on Indigenous Child Welfare in British Columbia

Grand Chief Ed John

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

British Columbia Representative for Children and Youth

2015 Report
Saskatchewan Child Abuse Protocol 2014

Government of Saskatchewan

2014 Report
15-YEAR-OLD LEVI: An Investigative Review

Office of the Child and Youth Advocate Alberta

2017 Report
Quebec Incidence Study 2014 (ÉIQ-2014): Final Report

Hélie, Sonia
Collin-Vézina, Delphine
Turcotte, Daniel
Trocmé, Nico
Girouard, Nadine

2017 Report
18-YEAR-OLD PETER: An Investigative Review

Office of the Child and Youth Advocate Alberta

2017 Report
Walking this path together: Anti-racist and anti-oppressive practice in child welfare

Carriere, Jeannine
Strega, Susan

2015 Book