State Laws. B. Child Abuse Reporting Requirements

09/25/2000

1. Inclusion of statutory rape in reporting requirements

Alaska statutes require mandated reporters to report all instances where they suspect that a child has suffered harm as the result of child abuse.[63] The definition of child abuse includes specific reference to sexual abuse, and it does not include any provisions that indicate that it applies only to parents, guardians, or custodians of the child in question.[64]

2. Mandatory reporters

Mandatory reporters include: practitioners of the healing arts; school teachers and administrative staff; law enforcement and correctional officers; administrative officers of institutions; child care providers; and employees of crisis intervention and prevention programs.[65]

3. Who to report to

Mandatory reporters are required to report to the nearest office of the Department of Health and Social Services within 24 hours if they suspect that a child has suffered harm as a result of child abuse. If a reporter cannot contact an office of the Department, he or she can make a report to law enforcement.[66]

4. State response

Upon receipt of a report of abuse, the Department of Health and Social Services is required to notify the Department of Law. If a law enforcement agency receives a report of abuse, it is required to immediately notify the Department of Health and Human Services. The Department of Health and Social Services must immediately conduct an investigation and provide the Department of Law with a written report of the investigation within 72 hours of the receipt of a report of abuse.[67] The Department of Health and Social Services must inform the nearest law enforcement agency if it concludes that the report involves conduct that falls under the state’s sexual abuse laws.[68]