Families face difficult challenges and may need specific resources, information, or assistance to deal with problematic personal situations. The following questions address common child welfare issues that families face. Inclusion on this list is for information purposes and does not constitute an endorsement by Child Welfare Information Gateway or the Children's Bureau.
How do I report suspected child abuse or neglect?
Find your State's child protective services reporting number or call the Childhelp National Child Abuse hotline—available 24 hours a day/7 days a week—at 1.800.4.A.CHILD (1.800.422.4453) to speak with a trained counselor.
For more information, visit How to Report Child Abuse or Neglect.
Visit our Client Rights page for general information about the grievance process and how to file a complaint.
For questions about child support, contact your local Child Support Agency.
You may access State and Tribal Child Support Agency Contacts on the Office of Child Support Enforcement website.
When deciding whether to leave a child home alone, you will want to consider your child’s physical, mental, developmental, and emotional well-being; their willingness to stay home alone; and laws and policies in your State regarding this issue. Depending on the laws and child protective policies in your area, leaving a young child unsupervised may be considered neglect, especially if doing so places the child in danger.
For general guidelines, considerations, and tips, view our publication, Leaving Your Child Home Alone.
If you are concerned about leaving your child home alone and it being perceived as child abuse and neglect, see Definitions of Child Abuse and Neglect.
Call the National Parent Helpline at 1.855.4.A.PARENT (1.855.427.2736) to speak with a trained National Parent Helpline professional who can listen to you, offer emotional support, and build on your parenting strengths.
Contact the ARCH National Respite Locator Service at 1.800.677.1116 (8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday).
Explore Single Mothers Grants for an overview of financial assistance programs that help single mothers.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration collects information on thousands of State-licensed providers who specialize in treating substance use disorders, addiction, and mental illness.
Contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1.800.273.TALK (1.800.273.8255) for free and confidential support for people in distress as well as prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones. This service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Refer to Information Gateway’s State Kinship Care Contacts and Programs to access contact information for State officials and kinship care-specific services offered by State child welfare departments.