Prevent Child Abuse in Tennessee


How do I get online child abuse prevention training and background checks?

Compass Abuse Prevention Services offers online child abuse prevention training and background checks.

What is child abuse and neglect in Tennessee?

Under Tennessee law, child abuse and neglect is:

  • Physical abuse: Non-accidental trauma or physical injury of a child, or failure to protect a child from harm.
  • Neglect: Failure to provide for a child’s physical survival needs to the extent that there is harm, or risk of harm, to the child’s health or safety.
child abuse
  • Sexual abuse: When a child is involved in intentional sexual acts that produce sexual arousal and/or gratification for the perpetrator or sexual behaviors/situations in which there is a sexual component.
  • Psychological harm: A repeated pattern of caregiver behavior or extreme incident(s) that convey to children they are worthless, flawed, unloved, unwanted, endangered. May include both abusive acts against a child and failure to act.

According to the Child Welfare League of America, there were 8,687 victims of abuse or neglect in Tennessee in 2018, a rate of 5.7 per 1,000 children. This is a 10.1% decrease since 2016.

Who is a mandated reporter according to TN state requirements?

Everyone in Tennessee is a mandated reporter under state law. 

Any person with reasonable cause to believe a child is being abused or neglected must, under the law, immediately report to the Tennessee Department of Children’s Services or to local law enforcement. 

mandated reporter

Failure to report abuse is a violation of the law and a Class A misdemeanor, carrying a sentence of up to three months imprisonment, a fine or both. 

How do I report child abuse in Tennessee?

Call the Child Abuse Hotline to report child abuse or neglect in Tennessee: 877-237-0004. 

Reports can also be made online.

Download a free information poster with the hotline number you can display in your school, business, or church.

report child abuse

How do I contact the TN Department of Children’s Services?

Contact the Tennessee Department of Children’s Services
UBS Tower, 315 Deaderick, 10th Floor
Nashville, TN 37243
(615) 741-9701

reporting child neglect

Disclaimer: Please ensure the information and courses meet requirements for your organization and circumstances and align with what your state Department of Children’s Services requires. The state requirements and child abuse and human trafficking statistics listed on this page are current as of February 21st, 2023 to meet the best information available. State requirements may change and it is your responsibility  to know your state mandated reporter requirements and the process for online child abuse prevention training. Compass Abuse Prevention Services can not guarantee acceptance by your school, organization, or state Department of Children’s Services . If there is a child abuse emergency, call 911 immediately.

Back to Top