Child Protective Services are legally mandated, non-voluntary services provided to ensure the safety and protection of children from abuse, neglect, and dependency. In North Carolina, any person who has reason to suspect that a child may be abused, neglected, or dependent is required by law to report their concerns to the agency (NC G.S. 7B-301). The agency determines if alleged reports meet the legal definitions contained in North Carolina General Statutes. Reports of abuse are responded to within 24 hours and reports of neglect and dependency within 72 hours. Approximately 135 reports are received each month.
Services are provided to assist with maintaining the safety of children in the home. A social worker will work with the family to alleviate the factors creating the abuse or neglect. Child and Family Team Meetings will be held periodically to develop case plans for children at risk. In some cases, the risk of harm to the child is so great that the child has to be removed and placed in an alternative living arrangement while family concerns are addressed. Safety for the child is the first priority with responses focused on preserving the family unit.
If you need more information about these services or need to make a report of abuse, neglect or dependency of a child, please call the Children’s Services Intake Worker at 910-814-6662. Services are provided 24 hours per day, seven days per week. An on-call social worker can be reached through the Harnett County Sheriff’s Office after regular working hours.