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Pennsylvania public welfare releases 2008 child abuse report.

HARRISBURG, Pa. -- The Pennsylvania Department of Public--Welfare released its 2008 Child Abuse Report and called on all Pennsylvanians to remain vigilant in protecting children from abuse.

According to the report, in 2008, more than 25,000 reports of suspected child abuse were received, an increase of more than 1,600 from 2007, suggesting a heightened awareness among mandated reporters and the general public.

Since 2007, working with the General Assembly, the Rendell administration has implemented new laws that require those working with children to obtain fingerprint-based federal criminal background checks. As a direct result of those checks, more than 160 individuals with criminal histories were prevented from working with children.

Pennsylvania's child welfare system is administered by the counties and supervised by the state Department of Public Welfare. County children and youth agencies investigate all cases of suspected abuse, take preventative measures to protect children from repeated abuse and offer rehabilitative services for families affected by abuse and neglect.

The Department of Public Welfare maintains a central registry for abuse reports and operates ChildLine, a toll-free, anonymous hotline allowing anyone to call to report suspected abuse. Calls to ChildLine at 1-800-932-0313 are accepted 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Since 1976, ChildLine has received more than 2.1 million calls. To see the report, visit

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Title Annotation:state and local news
Publication:Policy & Practice
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1U2PA
Date:Jun 1, 2009
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