St. Mary’s College of Maryland is committed to protecting the safety and welfare of children in or connected to our community.
By Maryland law, members of our community – faculty, staff and students – who suspect an individual is or has been the victim of child abuse or neglect, must report their suspicions both internally to the appropriate College official as well as to certain external law enforcement and child protective agencies.
The College’s Policy on the Reporting of Suspected Child Abuse and Neglect explains these reporting procedures in detail.
Please contact Michael Dunn, Assistant Vice President of Equity and Inclusion (email@example.com) with any questions about the policy, how to make a report, or how to request additional training.
The following guidance may assist community members in following the policy:
When a member of our community has reason to believe that any minor is being or has been abused or neglected in the past – or is now of age, but was abused or neglected as a child – they must make a report to the local Department of Social Services (DSS) or local law enforcement. The Maryland Department of Human Services maintains a list of local DSS offices throughout the state. To contact local law enforcement, individuals may contact a local police department or simply dial 911 and request to make a report.
The Maryland Department of Human Services, Child Protective Services, offers helpful information on reporting suspected child abuse and neglect.
In addition to reporting to DDS or law enforcement, individuals must report the suspected abuse or neglect to the College official designated by the President to receive such reports: Paul Pusecker, the Vice President for Business and Finance. Reports to the College may be made by email, phone, or in person (firstname.lastname@example.org, (240) 895-4413, Calvert Hall 109).
To the extent possible, individuals making a report of suspected abuse or neglect should include the following information:
- The name, age, and home address of the child;
- The name and home address of the parent or other person responsible for the care of the child;
- The child’s whereabouts;
- The nature and extent of the suspected abuse or neglect, including any information regarding possible previous instances of abuse or neglect; and
- Any other information that may help to identify the person responsible for the abuse or neglect or determine the cause.
Someone who suspects child abuse or neglect may be reluctant to make a report to a State authority and the College’s designee for any number of reasons. Please know that individuals who make a report under Maryland law in good faith shall be immune from any civil liability or criminal prosecution. In addition, anyone who makes a report under this policy in good faith shall be protected from any retaliation by the College for having complied with the policy. However, a failure to report suspected child abuse or neglect may result in disciplinary action by the College, up to and including termination.
Reporting of Suspected Child Abuse and Neglect Flow Chart
Incident of child abuse or neglect is disclosed to Mandatory Reporter
Step 1. Assessment ➤
- Mandatory Reporter may provide support and encourage referral to a trained professional
Step 2. Report ➤
- Mandatory Reporter contacts Local Department of Social Services
- Mandatory Reporter makes oral report
- Mandatory Reporter submits written report
Step 3. Follow-Up
- Mandatory Reporter makes oral and written report to College Designee: Paul Pusecker, Vice President for Business and Chief Financial Officer