Child Abuse is non-accidental harm that occurs to an individual by a parent, caregiver or trusted adult that causes physical, emotional, or sexual harm. Physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, and neglect are defined accordingly by the British Columbia Government:
Physical abuse is any physical force or action that results, or could result, in injury to a child. It is stronger than what would be considered reasonable discipline.
Sexual abuse is the use of a child for sexual gratification. It includes sexual touching as well as non-touching abuse, such as making a child watch sexual acts.
Emotional abuse is a pattern of destructive behaviour or verbal attacks by an adult on a child. It can include rejecting, terrorizing, ignoring, isolating, exploiting, or corrupting a child.
Neglect is failure to provide for a child's basic needs: food, clothing, adequate shelter, supervision, and medical care. Neglect is the form of abuse most frequently reported to the Ministry of Children and Family Development.