Information and Resources For:
Families:Intervention Programs:
List of MA Programs and Resources pdf format of    juvenile_firesetting_intervention_programs.pdf    List of MA Programs and Resources pdf format of    juvenile_firesetting_intervention_programs.pdf    
Prevent Fires Due to Children Playing with Lighters and Matches pdf format of    Prevent Fires Due to Children Playing with Ligh...  Quick Reference Guide for Fire and Explosive Laws pdf format of    quick_reference_guide_for_fire_and_explosive_law_v  file size 1MB
Parents Guide to Internet SafetyMass. Juvenile Court Clinics Summary pdf format of    ma_juvenile_court_clinics_summary.pdf    
Schools:Definitions of Clinical Diagnosis pdf format of    definitions_of_clinical_diagnoses.pdf
School Fire Reporting Law 

Bomb Threat Checklist:



Mental Health Resources: 
Psychoactive Booklet pdf format of    psychoactive_booklet.pdf   
Psychoactive Booklet - Spanish pdf format of    psychoactive_booklet_span.pdf   
Medication Manual for Consumers and Families pdf format of    medication_manual_for_consumers_and_families.pdf   
Medication Manual for Consumers and Families - Spanish pdf format of    medication_manual_spanish_for_consumers_and_famili   

Statewide List of Mobile Crisis Teams

Juvenile Court System

National Center for State Courts

Department of Children and Family Services
(formerly the Department of Social Services)

Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency

National Criminal Justice Reference Service

Article on Juvenile Firesetting Trends

Bureau of Justice Statistics

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

Article on Juvenile Arson - (FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin April 2005)

* Article on international presenters at a National Association of State Fire Marshals conference on juvenile firesetting

"Children Playing With Fire" research article on the NFPA website as follows:

  • Go to: then Quick Links >> Fact Sheets & Safety Tips >> Children and fire >> Reports and statistics

Arson Clearance Rates Statistics


Juvenile Firesetter Intervention Training: 

JFIS I pdf format of    juvenile_firesetter_intervention_specialist_i.pdf  teaches students to conduct an interview with firesetters and their families and provides an overview on the issue of juvenile firesetting, who these children are, and effective intervention strategies. Based on the NFPA 1035 Standard - Juvenile Firesetting Intervention Specialist I.

JFIS II pdf format of    juvenile_firesetter_intervention_specialist_ii.pdf  develops skills in interviewing and assessment of juvenile firesetters, program development, implementation and evaluation. It covers identification and intake, coalition building support and management, budget and funding, keeping a database, and program evaluation. Based on the NFPA 1035 Standard - Juvenile Firesetting Intervention Specialist II.

The 7th annual Northeast Juvenile Firesetting Conference will be held on May 9, 2013. For registration or schedule May 9, 2013- 7th Annual Northeast Juvenile Firesetting Conference, information

Children Playing With Fire

Each year, many fires are started by children ages 3-7 who are merely curious about fire. From 2008 through 2012, there were 747 juvenile-set fires reported in Massachusetts. These fires caused four civilian deaths, 38 civilian injuries and 20 firefighter injuries and an estimated dollar loss of $8.2 million. Over half, 53%, of these fires were started by children playing with matches and lighters.

Juvenile firesetting intervention programs tell us that this number is far below the real number of fires set by juveniles. Children tell us that they set many "small" or other fires before the fire that brings them to the attention of authorities.

Whether a child is merely curious about fire, making a cry for help or engaging in delinquent behavior, it is extremely dangerous for children to play with fire. Children who play with fire can be helped, but they must receive the right kind of help. It is not a phase that they will grow out of, it is not a matter of boys being boys or yelling at them or burning their fingers or other such methods. The reason a child plays with fire must be addressed. Each child must be evaluated and given the correct intervention treatment program. Treatment programs vary, typically containing one or more of the following components: education, psychological treatment or community service.

Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect in Massachusetts

Fire Fighters and Police officers are mandated reporters of child abuse and neglect by statute ( Massachusetts General Law CH 119-section 51A). Often times, in the performance of their duties they are called on to suppress or investigate fires that involve children who have been victimized by these fires. On some occasions, these children have caused the fires. If as a mandated reporter, you have questions about what constitutes abuse or neglect of children or your responsibilities as a mandated reporter-please go to the Department of Social Services Website.

To report possible child abuse or neglect in Massachusetts, you must first file an oral report by calling the Child-at-Risk Hotline at 1-800-792-5200 to notify the appropriate area office of the Department of Social Services(DSS). Even if you complete the 51A Report Form, you must also first phone DSS directly or the Child-at-Risk Hotline. For information on how to report child abuse and neglect outside of Massachusetts, please call the National Child Abuse Hotline, 1-800-4-A-CHILD.

This page is maintained by the Massachusetts Department of Fire Services.