| Volunteer Resources | Legal | Mandated Reporting As a private citizen, it is up to you to decide when, or if, you will report child abuse or neglect to the authorities.However, when you are sworn in as a CASA volunteer, you become something more: you become a “mandated reporter” of child abuse.As a mandated reporter, you must report child abuse or neglect that comes to your attention while you are acting within the scope of your duties as a CASA volunteer. When You Must Report California law states that a mandated reporter must make a report “whenever the mandated reporter, in his or her professional capacity or within the scope of his or her employment, has knowledge of or observes a child whom the mandated reporter knows or reasonably suspects has been the victim of child abuse or neglect.

However, if he discovers the same bruises on a pupil, he must.

The question turns on whether the abuse was discovered in one’s professional capacity (or within the scope of one’s employment). Abuse or neglect discovered within your private life is not subject to the legal requirements for reporting; however, abuse or neglect discovered within your capacity as a CASA volunteer is.

If you have any doubt about your need to report abuse or neglect, talk with your CASA case supervisor and he/she will be able to steer you in the right direction. Reporting Abuse is Your Responsibility So, if you become aware of abuse or neglect while working as a CASA, you must report it.

Discussing the matter with your case supervisor does not mean that you have satisfied your reporting requirement.

Simply put, you must report abuse according to the law if you, in your capacity as a CASA discover, or reasonably suspect child abuse has occurred.

Please note, that just because you become a mandated reporter under the law does not mean that you must report any and all incidents of abuse or neglect you stumble upon.

You are still a private citizen in your day-to-day life, and as such, your moral values can dictate when you make a report to authorities.

However, when you are acting within your capacity as a CASA, you must report any knowledge of abuse or neglect you discover in the line of duty. If a teacher discovers suspicious bruises on his infant nephew, he is not legally mandated to report it to authorities.

A CASA volunteer’s duty to report abuse or neglect is an individual responsibility. This basically means that you bear the burden of ensuring that the official report gets made, and that your report complies with the requirements the law, specifically Penal Code § 11166. Child abuse and neglect is not as easy to discern as one might think.