A Seminar for Camp CourageVolunteersMarch 18, 2013
Mandated Reporting Social Media Policy at Camp Courage FightingChildAbuse Camp Courage Policy for Reporting Penalties for Failing to Report ChildAbuse
In the USA, five children die of child abuseevery day Animal cruelty laws predate child abuse laws
Encourage complete reporting Involve law enforcement EstablishChild Protective Services in eachcounty Protect abused children from further abuse Provide rehabilitation Preserve & Stabilize families Assess risk and provide services
§ 42.42. Suspected child abuse—mandated reporting requirements. (a) General rule. Under 23 Pa.C.S. § 6311 (relating to persons required to report suspected child abuse), licenseeswho, in the course of the employment, occupation or practice of their profession, come into contact withchildren shall report or cause a report to be made to the Department of Public Welfare when they havereasonable cause to suspect on the basis of their professional or other training or experience, that a child comingbefore them in their professional or official capacity is a victim of child abuse. (b) Staff members of public or private agencies, institutions and facilities. Licensees who are staff members of amedical or other public or private institution, school, facility or agency, and who, in the course of theiremployment, occupation or practice of their profession, come into contact with children shall immediately notifythe person in charge of the institution, school facility or agency or the designated agent of the person in chargewhen they have reasonable cause to suspect on the basis of their professional or other training orexperience, that a child coming before them in their professional or official capacity is a victim of child abuse.Upon notification by the licensee, the person in charge or the designated agent shall assume the responsibilityand have the legal obligation to report or cause a report to be made in accordance with subsections (a), (c) and(d). (c) Reporting procedure. Reports of suspected child abuse shall be made by telephone and by written report. (1) Oral reports. Oral reports of suspected child abuse shall be made immediately by telephone toChildLine, (800) 932-0313. (2) Written reports. Written reports shall be made within 48 hours after the oral report is made by telephone.Written reports shall be made on forms available from a county children and youth social service agency. (d) Written reports. Written reports shall be made in the manner and on forms prescribed by the Department ofPublicWelfare.http://www.pacode.com/secure/data/049/chapter42/s42.42.html
Report suspected abuse immediately to thecamp director Contact Columbia County Children &YouthServices & PA ChildLine Contact CampVictory’s Executive Director Complete necessary forms
Dial 911 ImmediatelyIntervene if possibleGet help
Drastic change in behavior Withdrawn & Antisocial Excessive Fear Sleep Disturbances BedWetting Eating Disorders Change in school performance RiskTaking BehaviorsNOTE:These are also signsof grief in children.
Bruises Welts Burns Multiple injuries in various stages of healing Extra, unusual layers of clothing
Inadequate weight gain or growth Developmental delays Persistent hunger Lack of hygiene – soiled clothing Lack of supervision Untreated physical problems Deprivation of necessities
Constant belittling Name calling Bullying Rejection Limiting proper physical contact Exposing a child to abuse and violence Requires Professional Diagnosis
Disruptive behavior Bullying Inappropriate language Believes aberrant behavior is normal Describes what you recognize to be anabusive home environment when questioned Hateful May speak of suicide
Injury to the genitalia Difficulty sitting orstanding Suspicious stains onclothing of skin Resistance to removeclothing whenappropriate Bladder or urinary tractinfections Pain when using therestroom Bed wetting thumb sucking Loss of bowel control Difficulty swallowing Signs of STD’s Sleep disturbances Age inappropriate sexualknowledge Unusual sexual behavior
Disruptive behavior Bullying Cursing Racist / Ethnic Slurs Child believes this to be normal behavior Reports unrecognized abuse Speaks of suicide
The child is the intended target of a shooting The child is in the care of a known sexoffender The child is unattended in an automobile
Suspicious? Seek Help & AdviceFollow UpUnexplained InjuriesChild is DefensiveA FewWords Can SpeakVolumesAdmits / AllegesAbuse
Most likely someone the child knows 59% of abusers are parents, more often moms Often drug abusers and/or mentally ill Isolated or very young parents / several kids Abused as a child Non-related temporary care givers Don’t ignore suspicions
Interest in a particular child, often female Purchase expensive gifts Invitations for ‘sleep-overs’ Repeated offers to babysit “just because” Imposed, unwanted physical contact
Provide what parents won’t allow Insist on secrecy Threats
Reporting abuse gives victims a voice Fear keeps children vulnerable Shame keeps children vulnerable Abuse leads children to mistrust adults Some kids don’t know any other way Fear keeps children vulnerable
SSABER Stay Calm Support Affirm Believe Empower REPORTMake a Difference in a Child’s Life
SSABER Stay Calm Support Affirm Believe Empower REPORT“At that moment, truth begins.”“Thank you for telling me.”“I believe you.”“You have done nothingwrong.”“I will get help for you.”
Stay Calm.Listen.Keep the Child With You.Get Help.
Try to remain in no less than groups of three To protect the child To protect the buddies A group of four is safer
Don’t be silent – Say Something! You don’t need to be perfect Ask basic questions of the child: What happened? Where did it happen? When did it happen? Who did it? Were other kids hurt too? Are there witnesses?
2011In Pennsylvania Alone78%of all substantiated reportsof abuse came fromPeople LikeYou
Call ChildLine Anytime – 24/7 1-800-932-0313 Remember:800WEB-zero-DoAFavor Remember:800 932 - - - 0 3 1 3(Not perfect, but maybe it will help)
Inform camp director immediately If the child is in immediate danger, CALL 911 Call ChildLine Complete forms within 48 Hours Notify CampVictory Follow through!
Ask basic questions of the child: Child’s name, address, etc. What happened? Where did it happen? When did it happen? Who did it? Were other kids hurt too? Are there witnesses?
The Child’sWelfareSupersedes theFamily’s Right toPrivacy
Question &Answer“What if one ofour Big Buddies isa Pastor or aLawyer?”May they stillmake a report if achild admitsabuse to them inconfidence?ANSWER:Yes. If a Pastor or Lawyer, intheir capacity as a Big Buddyat Camp Courage, learns of anabused child, they are in therole of a Mandated Reporterand must report what they’velearned.
As a Big Buddy, you must report the abuse A child abuse report will have consequencesfor the child and her/his family, but it MUSTbe made in the interest of the long termwelfare of the child GET INVOLVED – it’s a moral and legalresponsibility You are protected if you make the report andcould be committing a crime by not reporting
Incidents discovered at Camp Courage are“very, very low” Much of the required information forreporting is already on file with CampCourage If there is a concern, ask the basic questionsand get help More information will be available at eachcamp experience
Be a role model, let someone know if youneed another person with you Create a boundary, youre not a bestfriend, or a surrogate parent – you’re atemporary guardian It’s a short term relationship for the kids (andyou), make it clear that there will be nocontact after camp Ryan will capture the memories in photos forthe kids
If you encourage too close an attachmentwith a camper you may cause deeper griefafter camp YOU MAY NOT CONTINUEA RELATIONSHIPWITHA CAMPER AFTER CAMP Be very careful if the child asks ‘difficult’questions, be honest – seek help if you need
Report concerns of ANY sort to the campdirector or counselor, for example: Camper may be self-harming (cutting) Substance abuse/use during camp – campers ortheir families while on camp property A camper intentionally tries to harm anotherperson – safety is a primary concern Inappropriate language – threats, suicidalthoughts, bullying, etc.
DON’T take personal pictures with yourcamera or cell phone AVOID social network dissemination ofinformation via social media regardingCampCourage AVOID using your personal electronic devices
Presenters: Melina Gittler & Sabrina LyonsRecording: RyanCraigSlides and Editing: J. E. Pesta