'Abused child' means a child whose parent, guardian, custodian, or any person responsible for his or her care or support, whether or not legally obligated to do so, has caused or allowed to be caused upon the child nonaccidental physical injury or other maltreatment.
Neglect: Citation: Ann. Code § 43-21-105
'Neglected child' means a child:
- Whose parent, guardian, custodian, or any person responsible for his or her care or support neglects or refuses, when able to do so, to provide proper and necessary care or support; education as required by law; or medical, surgical, or other care necessary for his or her well-being
- Who is otherwise without proper care, custody, supervision, or support
- Who, for any reason, lacks the special care made necessary for him or her by reason of his or her mental condition, whether said mental condition be mentally retarded or mentally ill
- Who, for any reason, lacks the care necessary for his or her health, morals, or well-being
Sexual Abuse/Exploitation: Citation: Ann. Code § 43-21-105
The term 'abused child' includes sexual abuse or sexual exploitation.
'Sexual abuse' means obscene or pornographic photographing, filming, or depiction of children for commercial purposes, or the rape, molestation, incest, prostitution, or other such forms of sexual exploitation of children under circumstances that indicate that the child's health or welfare is harmed or threatened.
Emotional Abuse: Citation: Ann. Code § 43-21-105
The term 'abused child' includes emotional abuse or mental injury.
This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.
Standards for Reporting: Citation: Ann. Code § 43-21-353
A report is required when a person has reasonable cause to suspect that a child is abused or neglected.
Persons Responsible for the Child: Citation: Ann. Code § 43-21-105
Responsible persons include:
- A parent, guardian, or custodian
- 'Any person responsible for care or support,' which refers to the person who is providing for the child at a given time, including, but not limited to, stepparents, foster parents, relatives, nonlicensed babysitters or other similar persons responsible for a child, and staff of residential care facilities and group homes licensed by the department
Exceptions: Citation: Ann. Code § 43-21-105
A parent who withholds medical treatment from any child who in good faith is under treatment by spiritual means alone through prayer, in accordance with the tenets and practices of a recognized church or religious denomination by a duly accredited practitioner thereof, shall not, for that reason alone, be considered to be neglectful.
Physical discipline, including spanking, performed on a child by a parent, guardian, or custodian in a reasonable manner shall not be deemed abuse under this section.