Reporting child abuse and neglect
If you are worried about the safety or welfare of a child, it is important that you report it. Even if you’re not sure, it's always best to get your concerns checked out by professionals. The information below gives advice on what to do if you think a child may be in danger.
Who to contact
If you think that a child living in Northern Ireland is:
- being abused
- has been harmed in any way
- is likely to suffer harm
you should contact the Gateway Services Teams for Children’s Social Work at the Health and Social Care (HSC) Trust in the area that the child lives.
You can also contact the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children's (NSPCC) free and confidential 24 hour helpline service on 0808 800 5000.
What you will be asked
You will be asked to provide information such as:
- where the child lives
- their personal or family details (if known)
- who cares for them
- the nature of your concerns
All calls relating to concerns about the safety of a child are taken seriously and treated in confidence. It is up to you if you wish to give your name or not. Social Services will investigate your concerns and take appropriate action to make sure that the child is protected.
More useful links
- Belfast Trust Gateway Team - Belfast Trust website
- Northern Trust Gateway Team - Northern Trust website (PDF 1MB)
- South Eastern Trust Gateway Team - South Eastern Trust website (PDF 212KB)
- Southern Trust Gateway Team - Southern Trust website (PDF 29KB)
- Western Trust Gateway Team - Western Trust website (PDF 28KB)
- Help with PDF files