Hawaii Definition of Child Abuse and Neglect

Physical Abuse: Citation: Rev. Stat. § 350-1
'Child abuse or neglect' means acts or omissions that have resulted in the physical health or welfare of the child, who is under age 18, to be harmed or to be subject to a reasonably foreseeable, substantial risk of being harmed. The acts or omissions are indicated for the purposes of reports by circumstances that include but are not limited to:
  • When the child exhibits evidence of any of the following injuries, and such injury is not justifiably explained, or when the history given concerning such condition or death is at variance with the degree or type of such condition or death, or circumstances indicate that such condition or death may not be the product of an accidental occurrence:
    • Substantial or multiple skin bruising or other internal bleeding
    • An injury to skin causing substantial bleeding
    • Malnutrition or failure to thrive
    • Burns or poisoning
    • Fracture of any bone
    • Subdural hematoma or soft tissue swelling
    • Extreme pain or mental distress
    • Gross degradation
    • Death
  • When the child is provided with dangerous, harmful, or detrimental drugs; provided that this paragraph shall not apply when such drugs are provided to the child pursuant to the direction or prescription of a practitioner

Neglect: Citation: Rev. Stat. § 350-1
'Child neglect' occurs when a child is not provided in a timely manner with adequate food, clothing, shelter, psychological care, physical care, medical care, or supervision.

Sexual Abuse/Exploitation: Citation: Rev. Stat. § 350-1
The term 'child abuse or neglect' includes instances when the child has been the victim of:

  • Sexual contact or conduct including, but not limited to, sexual assault
  • Molestation or sexual fondling
  • Incest
  • Prostitution
  • Obscene or pornographic photographing, filming, or depiction, or other similar forms of sexual exploitation

Emotional Abuse: Citation: Rev. Stat. § 350-1
The term 'child abuse or neglect' includes acts or omissions that have resulted in injury to the psychological capacity of a child as is evidenced by an observable and substantial impairment in the child's ability to function.

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.

Standards for Reporting: Citation: Rev. Stat. § 350-1.1
A report is required when there is reason to believe that child abuse or neglect has occurred or that there exists a substantial risk that child abuse or neglect may occur in the reasonably foreseeable future.

Persons Responsible for the Child: Citation: Rev. Stat. § 350-1
A 'responsible person' is any person who, or legal entity that, is:

  • In any manner or degree related to the child
  • Residing with the child
  • Otherwise responsible for the child's care

No exceptions are specified in statute.