Child protection

Keeping children safe is everyone's responsibility.

This means if you think child abuse might be happening, you must report it.

If you don't report, it could be a criminal offence.

Report child abuse by calling triple zero (000) or contacting the Child Protection unit at the Department of Health and Human Services.

I think my child has been abused or harmed

Speak to your child, but do not ask leading or intrusive questions.

Learn about speaking with your child about sexual abuse.

You can read more about recognising when a child is at risk at the Better Health Channel.

If you believe your child has been abused or harmed, report it.

The law

If you have a reasonable belief that a child has been sexually abused and don't report it to police, it's a criminal offence. This law applies to all adults.

Doctors, nurses, police officers and school teachers have extra responsibilities. They must report any suspected abuse if the parents or carers can't or won't protect the child. This is called mandatory reporting.


There's a process for how schools report and respond to suspected abuse.

You can read the child protection information given to schools.

Where to get help 

  • Child Protection Crisis Line, call 13 12 78
  • In an emergency, call triple zero (000)

Translated information

Protecting children from abuse

Easy English: Feeling safe for primary students (pdf - 672.14kb)

Easy English: Feeling safe for secondary students (pdf - 1.03mb)