Child Advocacy Centers (CAC) ensure that every child victim referred to a CAC has a comfortable, child-friendly environment for interviews and other services, reducing further trauma to the child and focusing on beginning their journey for hope and healing.
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HOW CAC WORKS
A children’s advocacy center is a child-focused, facility-based program in which representatives from many disciplines, including law enforcement, child protection, prosecution, mental health, medical and victim advocacy, and child advocacy, work together to conduct interviews and make team decisions about investigation, treatment, management and prosecution of child abuse cases. CAC’s are modeled on the simple but powerful concept of coordination between community agencies and professionals involved in the intervention system.
To learn more how CAC’s work visit the National Children’s Alliance (NCA). NCA is the national organization that provides coordination, standards by which CAC’s adhere to, and information and resource sharing for CAC’s across the country, including the 16 CAC’s here in Louisiana.
The multi-disciplinary team is a group of professionals that creates a child-focused approach to child abuse cases. This team encompasses both the intervention and investigative service areas. This includes representation from law enforcement, child protective services, prosecution, mental health services, medical professionals, victims advocacy services, and children's advocacy centers. CACLA supports the National Children's Alliance's strong belief that the combined professional wisdom and skill of the multi-disciplinary team approach results in a more complete understanding of case issues and the most effective child-and-family focuses system response possible.
A forensic interview is a single session, recorder interview designed to elicit a child's unique information when there are concerns of possible abuse or when the child has witnessed violence against another person. The forensic interview is conducted in a supportive and non-leading manner by a trained professional. Interviews are remotely observed by representatives of the agencies involved in the investigation (such as law enforcement and child protective services).