Laws Governing Child Abuse and Neglect
State Law #1. New York State Child Protective Services Act of 1973
New York State (NYS) created a child protective SYSTEM in a statute (law) with five fundamental components:
- Detection through third-party recognition of children in danger, including mandatory and voluntary reporting of suspected child abuse and maltreatment.
- NYS Central Register of reports of suspected child abuse and maltreatment.
- Creation of Child Protective Services (CPS) to:
- verify reports
- provide immediate protection of children
- begin the process of helping families by providing rehabilitative and ameliorative services.
- Emergency protective custody of children determined to be in “imminent danger.”
- Court Action when necessary. Family Court action (at the request of CPS) to remove a child, remove the allegedly abusive or neglectful parent from the child’s residence and impose treatment. Criminal Court action (at the request of law enforcement after a referral of the case from CPS) to prosecute the perpetrator for types of abuse that are criminally punishable. These include sexual abuse, severe physical abuse, or child endangerment.
This system in NYS, is based on Social Services Law, the Family Court Act, and criminal law.
State Law #2. New York State Child Abuse Prevention
Act of 1985
Expanded on the New York State (NYS) child protective SYSTEM in a statute with four fundamental components:
- Expanded training programs on child abuse and neglect.
- Developed standards for employment of those who work with children.
- Screening potential child care employees.
- Provided protection of children in 24-hour residential care facilities.