Child Protective Services
The Allegheny County Department of Human Services (DHS) Office of Children, Youth and Families (CYF) is the county's public office mandated by law to protect children from abuse and neglect and to ensure permanency for children.
Families become known to CYF through reported incidents of child abuse or neglect and other reports that are serious, but may not rise to the level of abuse as defined by the Child Protective Services Law (CPSL) [23 PA CS § 6303; 55 PA Code §3490.4]
To report cases of suspected child abuse or neglect, call:
CYF Intake Office at 412-473-2000 or
ChildLine at 1-800-932-0313
Legal Mandates That Govern the Child Welfare System
State and Federal laws that govern how the DHS Office of Children, Youth and Families conducts its work. As of February 2013.
Information about who is mandated to report cases of suspected abuse or neglect.
Information about agencies that provide trainings to mandated reporters in health care and other fields.
Overview of Key CYF Philosophies, Practices and Procedures
Gives an overview of various aspects of the child welfare system and how CYF works with families to keep children safe and strengthen families in Allegheny County.
Recent Changes in Child Welfare Laws
Includes changes for background checks, permanency plans, annual photographs, births of infants born exposed to illegal substances, reporting of child fatalities, reporting child abuse and the creation of Child Fatality/Near Fatality Review Teams. (Acts 33, 73, 76, 126, 146 and 179).
A Parent's Handbook
This handbook is provided to every family as they enter the child welfare system. It details the rights and responsibilities of the parents, court and child welfare system. It also provides an overview of what can be expected when involved with CYF. (Disponible en español, por debajo)
Child Abuse Prevention Month
Contains links to publications created in Allegheny County to raise awareness about the need for all community members to eliminate child abuse and neglect.
Child Welfare Mandates
Produced by the Pennsylvania Association of County Human Services Administrators (an affiliation of the County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania (CCAP) ), this document includes educational material concerning the child welfare mandates and how they are funded in Pennsylvania.
Home Alone - Is your child ready?
Helps parents think about all the factors that are important when deciding if a child is ready to be left home alone. (Disponible en español, por debajo)
Know Your Rights - A Guide for Youth in Substitute Care
by the Juvenile Law Center and KidsVoice
Major Federal Legislation Concerned With Child Protection, Child Welfare, and Adoption
Complied by the Child Welfare Information Gateway, current as of April 2012
Manual para Padres
Este manual se proporciona a cada familia cuando entran en el sistema de bienestar infantil. Este manual se proporciona a cada familia cuando entran en el sistema de bienestar infantil. En él se detallan los derechos y responsabilidades de los padres, los tribunales y sistema de bienestar infantil. También proporciona una visión general de lo que se puede esperar cuando se involucren con CYF.
My Life: Stories from Youth in Allegheny County’s Child Welfare System
Young adults who live in foster care face many challenges, particularly as they transition from out-of-home placement to independence. Given the opportunity, youth in the child welfare system offer great insights about how their lives were shaped by the services they received and by the absence of needed services. DHS tapped into this valuable resource and created My Life.
Pennsylvania Dependency Benchbook
A comprehensive resource, by judges for judges, that combines Pennsylvania law, organized pragmatically to allow quick and efficient use, with a series of state and national best practices that will provide judges and practitioners, from the least to most experienced, with the best possible information to support children and families safely.
Safety and Consumer Protection for Children and Families
Resources to help County residents keep their children and families safe in their homes and their communities.
Solo en casa – ¿Estu listo tu hijo?
Ayuda a los padres pensar en todos los factores que son importantes al decidir si un niño está listo para ser dejado solo en casa.
On Friday, Aug. 26, 2011 DHS Director Marc Cherna testified before the Pennsylvania Senate Committee on Aging and Youth regarding Senate Bill 753, which seeks to expand the definition of child abuse to include a woman’s use of illegal drugs during pregnancy. Director Cherna advocated against the expansion. Mr. Cherna's complete testimony.