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
Cortisol reactivity to social stress in adolescents: Role of depression severity and child maltreatment

Harkness, Kate
Stewart, Jeremy
Wynne-Edwards, Katherine

2011 Journal article
Child Maltreatment in Québec: Findings from the Incidence Study of 1998

Tourigny,Marc, Mayer, Micheline, Lavergne, Chantal, Trocmé, Nico, Wright, John & Daigneault, Isabelle

2011 Report
Trauma-Related Symptoms in Neglected Preschoolers and Affective Quality of Mother-Child Communication

Milot, Tristan
St-Laurent, Diane
Ethier, Louise S.
Provost, Marc A.

2011 Journal article
Child physical abuse and suicide-related behavior: A systematic review

Mironova, Polina
Rhodes, Anne E.
Bethell, Jennifer M.
Tonmyr, Lil
Boyle, Michael H.
Wekerle, Christine
Goodman, Deborah
Leslie, Bruce

2011 Journal article
Characteristics of Young Parents Investigated and Opened for Ongoing Services in Child Welfare

Fallon, Barbara
Ma, Jennifer
Black, Tara
Wekerle, Christine

2011 Journal article
Impact of a universal school-based violence prevention program on violent delinquency: Distinctive benefits for youth with maltreatment histories

Crooks, Claire V.
Scott, Katreena
Ellis, Wendy
Wolfe, David A.

2011 Journal article
Determinants of maltreatment substantiation in a sample of infants involved with the child welfare system

Williams, Gabriela
Tonmyr, Lil
Jack, Susan M.
Fallon, Barbara
MacMillan, Harriet L.

2011 Journal article
Contributions of the glucocorticoid receptor polymorphism (Bcl1) and childhood abuse to risk of bulimia nervosa

Steiger, Howard
Bruce, Kenneth
Gauvin, Lise
Groleau, Patricia
Joober, Ridha
Israel, Mimi
Richardson, Jodie
Ng Yin Kin, Francois

2011 Journal article
Saskatchewan Incidence Study of Reported Child Abuse and Neglect-2008 (SIS‑2008): Major Findings

MacLaurin, Bruce
Trocmé, Nico
Fallon, Barbara
Sinha, Vandna
Enns, Rick
Feehan, Richard
Rosenbluth, David
Holroyd, Jill
Farnell, Janet
Gail, Jordan
Kitt, Olivia
Thomas-Prokop, Shelley
Zelt, Carolyn
Budgell, Danielle
Hutcheon, Emily
Daoust, Gabrielle

2011 Report
Prevalence and correlates of multiplevictimization in anation-wide adolescent sample

Romanoa, Elisa
Bella, Tessa
Billetteb, Jean-Michel

2011 Journal article