Child Abuse / Neglect Reporting

Reporting Abuse / Neglect

Call the Freeborn County Department of Human Services at 507-377-5400 and ask to speak to the intake worker in the Child Protection/Child Welfare unit. If you're calling after hours, dial 507-377-5200 then select Option 5 to be connected to a dispatch intake worker. You can also send a confidential report via fax to 507-377-5505. Messages left after hours or on holidays are not received until the next business day. If you need immediate assistance because you believe the minor child is in danger, dial 9-1-1. A report needs to be made to the county where the abuse / neglect occurred. Be prepared to provide as much information as possible such as:
 
  • the name and address of the minor child
  • the name and address of the caregiver
  • the name and address of the alleged perpetrator
  • the nature and extent of the suspected abuse / neglect
  • the date and time of the alleged incident
Anybody can make a voluntary report of suspected child abuse / neglect if that person has reason to believe that a child has been maltreated. The requirements for reporting are outlined in the Reporting of Maltreatment of Minors Act.

Mandatory Reporting
A mandated reporter must call immediately but no late than 24 hours after they suspect that maltreatment may have occurred. The mandated reporter must follow up with a written report within 72 hours. A report can be made to the Freeborn County Department of Human Services - Child Protection / Child Welfare Unit or to law enforcement.

Should I Make a Report?
If you are unsure whether or not you should make a report, call the intake worker at 507-377-5400. The Child Protection Staff can help you decide if a report should be made based on the information you provide. If you are a voluntary reporter, you can choose to make an anonymous report. The identity of the reporter is always kept confidential.

Additional Information
After you have made the report, the Child Protection staff will screen the report to determine if it meets criteria to proceed with an investigation. You can ask to receive notification of the final investigation report determining whether or not abuse / neglect occurred. However, sometimes this information cannot be released due to data privacy and/or the health and safety of the minor child. Reporters' names are confidential and retaliation is prohibited and penalized.

Sometimes there may be concerns for a child that is being served by an institution and/or program. If such abuse / neglect did occur by a staff person at any of the following institutions and/or programs, the reporter can contact the Minnesota Department of Human Services, Division of Licensing at 651-297-4123.
 
  • childcare center
  • residential treatment center
  • group home for children
  • minor parent program
  • shelter for children
  • chemical dependency treatment program for adolescents
  • waivered services program for children
  • crisis respite service program for children
  • residential service program for children with developmental disabilities

If the alleged abuse / neglect occurred in a home health care setting, hospital, regional treatment center, nursing home or intermediate care facility for the mentally retarded, contact the Minnesota Department of Health, Office of Health Complaints at 651-215-8702 or 800-369-7994.

If the alleged perpetrator is employed by a public preschool, elementary school, middle school, secondary school or charter school and the child is a student in the school, contact the Minnesota Department of Children, Families, and Learning at 651-582-8546.

  1. Freeborn County  411 Broadway S., Albert Lea, MN 56007            Phone: 507-377-5299 

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