The MDT consists of a group of professionals such as law enforcement officers, assistant district attorneys, advocates, nurses, and a forensic interview specialist. All of these professionals are sensitive to the difficult and confusing time that you and your child may be experiencing. The CYS worker must assess the safety and protection of your child. The forensic interview specialist will ask your child questions and be part of the team discussion following the interview. A nurse will address any medical concerns, and a medical exam is available to every child. The law enforcement officer is from the location where the alleged incident occurred, and along with the assistant district attorney will determine if a crime has been committed and what other investigative steps must be taken. The victim advocate will be your link to supports. The MDT’s overall goal is to complete the investigation in a child friendly, timely and professional manner.
What should my child know about the interview?
Children seem to be put at ease by knowing what to expect. It is helpful to inform your child that someone wishes to talk with him or her about what was reported. It is important to reassure your child and give him or her permission to talk freely; however it is equally important not to rehearse with your child or tell your child what to say.
At the end of the interview, the CYS investigator and/or law enforcement will inform you about what will happen next. Unless told otherwise, you and your child are free to leave after talking with the investigators. The team will meet and develop a plan. An advocate or the CYS investigator may contact you at a later date with more detailed information.
If your child receives a medical examination, explain that this is to make sure that his or her body is healthy. Assure your child that this exam will not hurt and that the medical examiner will tell your child everything that she will be doing prior to the exam.