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.