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What Is Childline?

ChildLine is an administrative agency run through the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare whose function is to protect the safety and well being of children from abuse and neglect.

When a person has been accused of abuse or neglect of a child, it is investigated by an agency within the county or state. If the allegation is deemed to be "founded," a report is generated to ChildLine by the agency. ChildLine will then notify the individual that a founded report has been entered against them with ChildLine and they have a certain period of time in which they may appeal the report.

There are severe consequences to a ChildLine report being founded. Schools and educational facilities are required to obtain ChildLine clearances for their employees. Schools will not allow parents with a founded ChildLine report to participate in school activities such as volunteering in the school or acting as a chaperone for a field trip. ChildLine may prevent a person from participating in other activities as well, such a coaching a child's soccer team or running a girl scout troop.

Even if you do not directly work for a school, but work in an industry which may come into contact with children, your employment may be in jeopardy. For example, a person who is employed by a heating and air conditioning repair company that works on schools or day cares cannot have a founded report through ChildLine because they will not be allowed in those facilities.

In addition, all childcare agencies are prohibited from employing a person with a founded ChildLine report.

The appeals process to clear a founded report with ChildLine is known as an Expunction.

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