Professionals who interact with seniors or people with disabilities might, from time to time, suspect that abuse is occurring. However, it can be challenging to know how to handle this situation. Further, how does an individual know if they fall under the category of employee or volunteer considered a Mandatory Reporter?
Are You a Mandated Reporter?
Any time a person in a professional position comes in contact with someone who is living in a vulnerable condition, it is important to watch for signs of abuse.
Examples of mandated reporters include:
- Foster parents
- School teachers
- School administrators
- Child care providers
- State employees
- Social workers
- Law enforcement officers
- Mental health professionals
- Guidance counselors
It doesn’t matter if you are in a paid or unpaid position. Also, the amount of responsibility over the potential victim isn’t relevant. Both full-time caregivers as well as people with intermittent responsibility should file a report when abuse is suspected. This can span neglect, financial, physical, or sexual abuse.
Filing an Abuse Report
When do you need to file a report for a potentially abusive situation? If there is reason to believe that someone is being abused, it is important to be proactive. File the report as soon as possible. Mandated reporters are under legal obligation to report within 36 hours of observing suspected abuse. A written report should always be submitted.
Failing to report the situation could result in criminal charges. On the other hand, immunity is granted for reporting the information within the window of time. If you have questions or need more information about reporting abuse, then we are here to help. Contact our team at info@SeniorSafeAndSound.org or call 858-480-7551. Senior Safe and Sound.
This information is intended to inform the public at large about this important issue. It is not intended to serve as legal advice.