Protective Services

Child Abuse & Neglect

Signs and Symptoms

Child Abuse
Child abuse is the physical, sexual, or emotional maltreatment of a child (ages 0 to 18) by a parent, family member, other caregiver, or non-caregiver.
Physical Abuse
Physical abuse will involve cuts, broken or fractured bones, burns, internal injuries, or severe and frequent bruising inflicted on a child by other than accidental means.
Sexual Abuse
Sexual abuse will involve sexual intercourse, other sexual contact, or exploitation.
Emotional Abuse
Emotional abuse will involve verbal mistreatment, withholding of love or companionship, and the like.
Child Neglect
Child neglect is the failure of the parent or other caregiver to provide necessary care, including: supervision, food, clothing, shelter, and medical care—for reasons other than poverty—so as to seriously endanger the physical health of a child.
Prevent Child Abuse Wisconsin External link
This link is to the Prevent Child Abuse Wisconsin web site that includes information on recognizing and reporting child abuse and neglect along with information and statistics.
Recognizing Child Abuse and Neglect: Signs and Symptoms External link
This link is to a publication on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children & Families web site that defines some of the signs that may be present in the child or parent that may signal the presence of child abuse or neglect.