What Mandated Reporters Need to Know

How PFSA Supports Mandated Reporters 

Pennsylvania Family Support Alliance is the recognized leader in Pennsylvania for mandated reporter training; we train thousands of mandated reporters each year. PFSA has been supporting mandated reporters for more than 20 years. We developed the first state-approved curriculum to train mandated reporters in how to recognize and report child abuse; we also have developed training on child neglect and how to respond if a child discloses abuse. Our training is conducted by experts in the field of child welfare across Pennsylvania, many of whom have decades of experience in responding to reports of child abuse, investigating reports and providing services to families. Find out more about our expert trainers here. Each mandated reporter training session provides supporting information in the form of workbooks, reference documents and strategies for preventing and addressing child abuse. Click here to find out about our training opportunities.


We also provide information to mandated reporters on recent changes to the Child Protective Services Law (CPSL), the problem of child abuse and neglect in general and links to helpful research and statistical information. You can find this information by clicking here.


Understanding Mandated Reporting 

Mandated reporters are people who are required by law to report suspected child abuse. They make over 75% of the calls to ChildLine, the state’s 24-hour hotline to report child abuse. They are often the only link between a child and safety from abuse. It is vitally important that mandated reporters understand how to recognize child abuse and how to make reports that are timely, complete and accurate.


Who Are Mandated Reporters? 

Mandated reporters generally are people who come into contact with children as a part of their employment, practice of their profession and, sometimes, as volunteers in child-serving programs. The Child Protective Services Law (CPSL) was amended in 2013 and in 2014, including significant changes to the list of people who are mandated to report suspected child abuse. Effective December 31, 2014, these people are considered mandated reporters under Pennsylvania Law:

  • School employee (someone who is employed by the school or who provides a program, activity or service sponsored by a school). This includes youth camp/program, a recreational camp or program; sports or athletic program, outreach program, enrichment program and a troop, club or similar organization;

  • Anyone licensed or certified under the Department of State to practice in any health-related field;

  • A medical examiner, coroner or funeral director;

  • An employee of a healthcare facility or provider licensed by the Department of Health who is engaged in the admission, examination, care or treatment of individuals;

  • An employee of a child care service who has direct contact with children in the course of employment;

  • Clergyman, priest, rabbi, minister, Christian science practitioner, religious healer or spiritual leader of any regularly established church or other religious organization;

  • An individual paid or unpaid who, on the basis of the individual’s role as an integral part of a regularly scheduled program, activity or service, accepts responsibility for a child;

  • An employee of a social services agency who has direct contact with children in the course of employment;

  • A peace officer or law enforcement official including the Attorney General, a district attorney, a PA State Police officer and a municipal police officer;

  • An emergency medical services provider certified by the Department of Health;

  • An employee of a public library who has direct contact with children in the course of employment;

  • An individual supervised or managed by a person listed above who has direct contact with children in the course of employment;

  • An independent contractor;

  • An attorney affiliated with an agency, institution, organization or other entity, including a school or regularly established religious organization that is responsible for the care, supervision, guidance or control of children;

  • A foster parent.


Anyone can and should report suspected child abuse; mandated reporters must report suspected abuse. 

To read a summary of the changes to the CPSL, click here.