Establishment and Maintenance of Central Registries for Child Abuse or Neglect Reports - Pennsylvania

Date:

Establishment

Citation: Cons. Stat. Tit. 23, § 6331

There shall be established in the Department of Public Welfare a statewide database of protective services that shall include the following:

  • Reports of suspected child abuse pending investigations
  • Reports with a status of pending juvenile court or pending criminal court action
  • Indicated and founded reports of child abuse
  • Unfounded reports of child abuse awaiting expunction
  • Unfounded reports accepted for services
  • Reports alleging the need for general protective services
  • General protective services reports that have been determined to be valid
  • Reports alleging the need for general protective services that have been determined invalid and are awaiting expunction
  • Family case records for all reports accepted for investigation, assessment, or services
  • Information on reports made to the agency but not accepted for investigation or assessment
  • False reports of child abuse pursuant to a conviction under title 18, § 4906.1 (relating to false reports of child abuse) for the purpose of identifying and tracking patterns of intentionally false reports

Purpose

Citation: Cons. Stat. Tit. 23, §§ 6333; 6342(a)

The department shall use the information for immediately identifying prior reports in the statewide database, reports under investigation with a pending status, and monitoring the provision of child protective services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

The department may conduct or authorize the conducting of studies of the data contained in the statewide database and by county agencies and distribute the results of the studies.

Contents

Citation: Cons. Stat. Tit. 23, § 6336

The statewide database shall include the following information:

  • The names, Social Security numbers, age, race, ethnicity, sex, and home addresses of the subjects of the report
  • The date, nature, and extent of the alleged instance that created the need for protective services
  • The county in which the alleged incidents occurred
  • Family composition
  • The names and relationships of the child and other persons named in the report
  • Factors contributing to the need for protective services
  • The source of the report
  • Services planned or provided
  • If the report alleges child abuse, whether the report was determined to be founded, indicated, or unfounded
  • If the report alleged the child was in need of general protective services, whether the report was valid or invalid
  • If the report was accepted for services and the reasons for the acceptance
  • If the report was not accepted for services, the reason the report was not accepted and whether the family was referred to other community services
  • Information obtained by the department in relation to a perpetrator's or school employee's request to release, amend, or expunge information retained by the department
  • The progress of any legal proceedings based on the report
  • Whether a criminal investigation has been undertaken and the result
  • If an unfounded or invalid report is later determined to be a false report, a notation to that effect regarding the status of the report
  • Unfounded reports of child abuse, limited to the information relating to disposition and expunction of the reports
  • Any additional demographic information needed for data studies
  • A family case record for each family accepted for investigation, assessment, or services
  • For cases that are not accepted for investigation, assessment, or referral to community services, the reason the report was not accepted and any information on other services provided to the family

Maintenance

Citation: Cons. Stat. Tit. 23, § 6338

When a report of suspected child abuse is determined by the appropriate county agency to be a founded report or an indicated report, the status of the report shall be changed from pending to founded or indicated in the statewide database.

The statewide database shall indefinitely retain the names of perpetrators of child abuse and school employees who are subjects of founded or indicated reports only if the individual's Social Security number or date of birth is known to the department. The entry in the statewide database shall not include identifying information regarding other subjects of the report.