Duty to Report Child Abuse and/or Neglect

Communiqué du commissaire des incendies

Duty to Report Child Abuse and/or Neglect

Communiqué 2015-06

March 23, 2015

In February 2014, the Coroner’s Jury from the inquest into Jeffrey Baldwin’s death issued its verdict and recommendations. In support of the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services’ implementation of inquest recommendations, the Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management is providing some information to the fire service regarding the duty to report child abuse and/or neglect.

The Child and Family Services Act states that the public, including professionals who work with children, must promptly report any suspicions that a child is or may be in need of protection directly to a children’s aid society. This is referred to as one’s “duty to report”.

When conducting fire safety inspections or responding to fires or emergency situations, members of the fire service may see signs of child abuse or neglect, or that a child is or might be in need of protection, and would therefore have a duty to report. This report should be made directly to the local children’s aid society.

The Ministry of Children and Youth Services Web site contains some resources, including the following:

Information on children’s aid societies and how to locate a local children’s aid society can be found on the Ontario Association of Children’s Aid Societies’ Web site, www.oacas.org.

Enquiries regarding the duty to report and the resources mentioned above should be directed to Jill Dubrick, Child Welfare Secretariat, Ministry of Children and Youth Services, who can be reached by e-mail at Jill.M.Dubrick@ontario.ca or by telephone at 416 326-0273.