All citizens have a responsibility to protect those who cannot protect themselves. Members of the general public may report suspected abuse and neglect if they choose.
Oregon state law, however, mandates that workers in certain professions must make reports if they have reasonable cause to suspect abuse or neglect. These people are called mandatory reporters and they are a crucial link in the system to protect Oregon’s most vulnerable citizens.
All employees of the Oregon Department of Human Services are mandatory reporters. These individuals are required to report because they have frequent contact with at-risk populations – infants and children, people who are elderly or dependent, individuals with mental illness or developmental disabilities, and residents of nursing homes and other health care facilities.