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North Dakota Century Code 50-25.1 defines the law to “protect the health and welfare of children by encouraging the reporting of children who are known to be or suspected of being abused or neglected; the providing of adequate services for the protection and treatment of abused and neglected children and to protect them from further harm.”

  • Anyone can report suspected child abuse and neglect
  • Certain professionals are required by law to report suspected child abuse and neglect
  • Reporter’s name must remain confidential by law
  • Types of Child Abuse or Neglect
  1. Abuse-caregiver inflicts or allows to be inflicted upon the child bodily injury, substantial bodily injury, or serious bodily injury. ie: unreasonable severe corporate punishment
  2. Sexual Abuse-sexual contact between a child and an adult or significantly older, more powerful person.  ie:  inappropriate sexual comments, taking or showing sexually explicit photographs, exposing a child to pornography or adult sexual activity
  3. Neglect- , , , , or
  4. Medical Neglect-parents or caregivers fail to seek medical or dental treatment for health problems or conditions, which if left untreated, could present danger to the child
  • After report is received, trained Child Protection worker is assigned to assess the concerns in the report
  • 1st steps are to assess for immediate safety of the child
  • Past history and current reports are reviewed
  • Collateral contacts may be contacted who can give more information regarding the child’s safety and risk of future maltreatment
  • The child protection worker may talk to the child at school or at home
  • The child protection worker does not need consent to talk to the child from the person responsible for the child’s welfare per North Dakota law
  • Child protection workers try to keep families together by working on a safety plan unless a child is in danger and cannot be protected in the home or with other appropriate family members
  • The outcome decision of the CPS assessment decides whether or not services are required to provide for the protection and treatment of an abused or neglected child.  Each full assessment will have the finding of either:  Services Required or No Services Required
  1. No Services Required-decision reflects the belief that a child is not abused or neglected as defined by law.  Services may still be offered or recommended to the family
  2. Services Required-decision reflects the belief that a child is abused or neglected as defined by law.  These cases are referred to the court for potential legal action.  In addition these cases are also referred to Burleigh County Social Services In-Home Services department to work on a case plan. 

    Legal Action warranted

  • If a child is in immediate danger, the child will be placed in temporary protective custody by the court, police officers, or doctor pending a Shelter Care hearing
  • Parent(s) or legal guardians will have a Shelter Care hearing within 96 hours when their child(ren) is placed in emergency protective custody
415 East Rosser Avenue Suite 113
Bismarck ND 58501-4058
OFFICE PHONE: 222-6670
FAX: 221-3384 Administration
FAX: 222-6476 Economic Assistance
FAX: 222-6644 Child & Family Services

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