The Child Protective Services law in Pennsylvania requires adults who have regular contact with young people to report signs of suspected child abuse to law enforcement authorities. So-called “mandatory reporters” include teachers, school personnel and members of the clergy.

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia has a policy that includes every adult working with young people. Anyone with regular contact with children or youths through archdiocesan parishes, schools or institutions is considered a mandatory reporter by the Archdiocese. {{more}}

Though not required by law, the more than 24,000 Church workers including teachers, parish employees, clergy, volunteers and coaches are expected to complete a new training program by November. The training initiative was announced in a document shared in all parishes over the last few weekends titled “Moving Forward in Faith,” part of a series of bulletins that are available online at

The program trains Church workers and volunteers on how to make a report of suspected child abuse to the Pennsylvania Department of Welfare’s ChildLine at 1-800-932-0303 and to the archdiocesan Office for Child and Youth Protection at 1-888-800-8780. The latter office is sponsoring the training program, which will be conducted by the Network of Victims of Abuse of Bucks County, and consists of a course of three hours for employees and one hour for volunteers.

According to “Moving Forward in Faith,” training helps adults identify the signs of child abuse; respond to children who disclose they have been abused; and understand the required steps, under state law and archdiocesan policy, in order to report suspected child abuse.

The training that covers all adults working with children is one more way the Archdiocese is helping to advance the protection of young people, care for victims of abuse and ensure the integrity of the priesthood.