Cross-Reporting Among Agencies That Respond to Child Abuse and Neglect - Pennsylvania

Date: February 2021

Cross-Reporting Between Child Protective Services and Law Enforcement

Citation: Cons. Stat. Tit. 23, §§ 6334; 6365(c)

After ensuring the immediate safety of the child and any other child in the child's home, a county agency or law enforcement official that receives a report of suspected child abuse shall immediately notify the Department of Human Services of the report. If the report is an oral report by telephone, the county agency or law enforcement official shall attempt to collect as much of the information listed in § 6313(c) (relating to reporting procedure) as possible and shall submit the information to the department within 48 hours through a report in writing or by electronic technologies.

If the department receives a report of suspected child abuse that also alleges that a criminal offense has been committed against the child, the department immediately shall transmit an oral notice or notice by electronic technologies to the appropriate law enforcement official in the county where the suspected child abuse is alleged to have occurred.

A multidisciplinary investigative team shall be used to coordinate child-abuse investigations between county agencies and law enforcement. The county agency and the district attorney shall develop a protocol for the convening of multidisciplinary investigative teams for any case of child abuse by a perpetrator involving crimes against children which are set forth in § 6340(a)(9) and (10) (relating to release of information in confidential reports). The county multidisciplinary investigative team protocol shall include standards and procedures to be used in receiving and referring reports and coordinating investigations of reported cases of child abuse and a system for sharing the information obtained as a result of any interview. The protocol shall include any other standards and procedures to avoid duplication of fact-finding efforts and interviews to minimize the trauma to the child. The district attorney shall convene the multidisciplinary investigative team in accordance with the protocol. The multidisciplinary investigative team shall consist of those individuals and agencies responsible for investigating the abuse or for providing services to the child and shall at a minimum include a health care provider, county caseworker and law enforcement official.

Other Reporting Requirements

This issue is not addressed in the statutes and regulations reviewed.