Skip navigation
 

Child Abuse and Neglect

We all play a role in keeping children safe. To report suspected child abuse or neglect, call 1-844-CO-4-KIDS (1-844-264-5437). This hotline is available 24/7.  If you see a child in a life-threatening situation, call 911 immediately.

 

Translate This Page

 

What You Need To Know

When you call the Colorado Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline (1-844-CO-4-KIDS or 1-844-264-5437), you’ll be immediately connected to the county where the child you’re worried about lives. You’ll speak with a certified call taker, who will ask you for the child’s name and location, what you’ve observed, who you think may be hurting the child and more. Remember, call -- even if you don’t have all the details. Based on the information you provide and what other callers may have shared about the same family, a group of professionals will review, evaluate, and determine what should be done to help the family.

Yes, but leaving your name and contact information will allow us to follow up to gather any additional information we may need. Also, if you’re required by law to report concerns (“mandatory reporters”), you may not be able to prove you did so, unless you leave your name and phone number. 

Yes, all calls are kept confidential, and your personal information will not be disclosed to the family mentioned in your report without your consent or a court order.

Abused children or teens may:

  • Have unexplained burns, bites, bruises, broken bones, or black eyes, or faded bruises or marks after an absence from school
  • Seem frightened of their parents and protest or cry when it’s time to go home
  • Report injuries from their parents or adult caregivers
  • Abuse animals or pets
  • Offer explanations of injuries that don’t make sense

Neglected children or teens may:

  • Wear soiled clothing or clothing that is far too small or large and in need of repair
  • Be dressed inadequately for the weather
  • Be constantly hungry; hoard, steal, or beg for food or come to school with little food
  • Appear frequently tired with little energy
  • Report caring for younger siblings on a regular basis
  • Have poor hygiene, smell of urine or feces, or have dirty or decaying teeth
  • Be far too thin or have a bloated stomach (may indicate malnutrition)
  • Have untreated medical or dental problems, such as infected sores
  • Say no one at home offers care

Abuse or neglect comes in many forms – it’s not just physical. Other types of abuse include emotional, sexual, institutional (occuring in day care or over-24-hour care settings), and child sex trafficking, while neglect can include medical, educational, and emotional neglect. Each has its own set of warning signs. Visit CO4Kids.org to learn more.

Children or youth involved in sex trafficking may:

  • Have money, cell phones, or other items that can’t be explained or accounted for
  • Say they’ve participated in a sexual act in exchange for shelter, transportation, drugs, alcohol, money, or other items of value
  • Use the internet to post sexually explicit material (e.g., pictures, chats, advertisements, etc.)
  • Be accompanied by an overly controlling “friend,” “partner,” or “boss”

Physical or emotional indicators can include:

  • Injuries; signs of physical or sexual abuse
  • Signs of drug and/or alcohol dependency
  • Difficulty sitting or standing; “stomach aches”
  • Sexually transmitted infections, especially in youth younger than 14
  • Tattoos or scars they’re hesitant to explain
  • Increased anxiety or fearfulness
  • Increased submissive behavior
  • Suicidal thoughts or actions

Call the Colorado Crisis Services hotline at 844-493-8255. You can talk with a trained crisis counselor about anything, including these topics as well as relationship problems, bullying, substance abuse, stress, anxiety, and disabilities

 


You May Also Find Helpful

 

 

Report concerns about abuse, neglect, or exploitation of an older adult or an adult with an intellectual or developmental disability

 

Call 1-844-CO-4-KIDS (1-844-264-5437) to report suspected child abuse or neglect. Get more info at CO4Kids.org.

 

Call Colorado Crisis Services (1-844-493-8255) to get help with mental health, substance abuse, or emotional issues for yourself or someone you know.

 

Safe2Tell (1-877-542-7233) is a hotline for students to anonymously report anything that concerns or threatens you, your friends, your family, or your community.

 

See our tips and resources for keeping your family safe.
 

 

Get Started »

Report suspected child abuse or neglect by calling 1-844-CO-4-KIDS (1-844-264-5437).

 
 

 

Together, we’ve got this.

 

Become a Foster Parent

Be the difference in the life of a Denver child or youth in need of a temporary, safe, caring home.

 
 

Adult Protection Hotline

Report suspected abuse, neglect, or exploitation of older or at-risk adults by calling 720-944-4DHS (4347).

 
 

Keep My Family Safe

Parenting and life situations can be stressful. Here are tips, tools, and resources to help keep your family safe, well, and happy.

 
 

Locations

Main Office, Richard T. Castro Human Services Center
1200 Federal Blvd.
Denver, CO 80204
 

 

Customer Service

720-944-4DHS (4347)

If you need Colorado Relay/TTY services in Denver, please call 711. If you need Spanish-language relay services, please call 800-337-3242.

 



 

City Assistance

Call 3-1-1

Outside Denver: 720-913-1311
Emergencies: 911
TTY Service: 720-913-8479


 

 

Connect

Newsletter

Sign up to stay in touch with Denver Human Services.