Got this an email about six months ago. WHat do yea think guys what would you change if you could?
Suggestions of change
1) When the child abuse report is made by any of the following professionals: hospitals, health care providers, counselors, schools, or teachers, the report should be considered to be more credible than reports from private citizens.
2) Upon receiving a child abuse report from a professional, extra protection and safety measures should be taken to ensure the child's
safety during the investigation process. These are some suggested measures of protection:
A 1. Upon receiving a report for child abuse, the suspected abusive parent should also be required to submit to mandatory supervised visitation for one to three hours weekly in the presence of a trained
counselor. The suspected abusive parent should be asked that they refrain from having any unsupervised contact with the child until all investigations are complete. It will be the suspected abusive parent's decision whether or not they agree to the request. But,
there should still be mandatory supervised visitation of the parent and child or children in the presence of a trained counselor during the 30 day investigation process regardless of the suspected parents
decision whether to refrain from unsupervised visits on their own.
A.2 The current procedures in suspected child abuse cases are to merely advise the suspected abuser to have supervised visits at their office during the investigation. This is no protection to children in
danger of being abused by the suspected abusive parent. When the suspect is guilty of child abuse, they do not agree to any supervised visits. Enforcing mandatory supervised visits for a few hours a week
is the only way to provide the child with a minimum amount of reasonable protection. These visits would also be beneficial to the person accused of child abuse to protect them, and would be helpful to the child abuse investigators in making their determination.
A3. The current procedure that is used when more than one professional has made a child abuse report on the same child is to request an extension to leave the child's case open for six months. There are no services offered during the six months. It is only an open case where nothing is done to protect the child and no further investigations occur. When suspected child abuse has been reported by three or more professionals and the suspected abuser is the parent,
the parental rights to unsupervised visitation should be overridden. The child should automatically be given the protection of full-supervised visitation for a minimum of one month. In cases where the suspected abuser is the primary custodial parent, the child should be removed from the home and placed with safe non-abusing relatives or foster care for a minimum of one
B. When a child abuse report is made by any professional, the suspected child abuser of the child should be required to undergo a mandatory psychological evaluation by an independent psychologist. If the psychological evaluation shows areas of concern or, when the child has significant behavior changes that can be verified as possible side effects of an abused child, the children and youth services should arrange for the child and the family to receive in-home counseling with wrap around care.
C. All interviews with children under the age of ten should be videotaped to minimize the amount of interviews that the child is subjected to.
D. For investigations of child sexual abuse, anatomically correct dolls should be provided to children during the interview and all children and youth offices should be legally required to have one male and one female anatomically correct doll in their office.
3. There should be yearly mandatory child abuse training, testing, and certifications for all of the child abuse supervisors, child abuse caseworkers, and investigative police officers in all areas of
child abuse. The educators of the training should be done by a physician, child abuse counselor, or other training services specialized in the education of all forms of child abuse. Children and youth supervisors should be required to undergo a psychological
examination before being placed into an administrative job position.
4. Child abuse and prevention training should be mandatory for all the public school systems. The training for teachers and school administrators should be done yearly as collaboration between local child abuse counselors.
5. Schools should be required to institute child abuse safety and prevention courses for all elementary students, including children in kindergarten. Just as the schools teach children the importance of stranger danger, children also need to be taught preventative child abuse. Good and bad touch training should be considered to be just as important as the stranger danger training since, the majority of abusers are not strangers but are known to the child. The school
should have one day out of the school year that teaches them child abuse prevention.
6. The child line abuse reporting system needs to find a way to substantiate the validity of the child abuse reporters that are reporting suspected child abuse and to also keep the callers identity anonymous. An example of the current problem with the reporting
system is a scenario such as this: In cases where the reporter discloses their name; child line currently has no way to substantiate that a child abuse reporter as being who they say they are. The child line worker could ask for the person reporting for their drivers
license number or social security number as a way to verify the credibility of the abuse report. The decision to provide this information should be optional information provided, just as the disclosure of the person's name is optional.