Script: The following presentation was developed by the Child Protection Accountability Commission’s Abuse Intervention Subcommittee to provide a uniform mandatory reporting training and to help mandated reporters understand the law and their reporting requirements. Additionally, recent legislation increased the need for training statewide. For more information on the Child Protection Accountability Commission and the Abuse Intervention Subcommittee, please go to the Office of the Child Advocate’s Website, which is listed later in this presentation. Speaking points: The Child Protection Accountability Commission or CPAC was legislatively created after the death of Brian Martin in 1997. CPAC members are appointed by the Governor and represent the array of child welfare partners. CPAC is staffed by the Office the Child Advocate. The Abuse Intervention Subcommittee is chaired by the Department of Justice and was created by former Attorney General Charles Oberly to encourage multidisciplinary investigations of child abuse. The Abuse Intervention Subcommittee is also the Children’s Justice Act Task Force. Federal Children’s Justice Act monies target: (1) the investigation and prosecution of child abuse and neglect , particularly sexual abuse and exploitation, (2) the handling of suspected child abuse and neglect related fatalities, and (3) the handling of cases of children with disabilities or serious health-related problems who are victims of child abuse or neglect.
Script: Infants, toddlers, and special needs children are the most vulnerable population that we serve. In order to prevent harm to these children, it is important to understand how to identify and report child abuse and neglect. Reporting abuse and neglect may also assist families in receiving necessary services, or it may help disrupt or terminate a cycle of maltreatment. Speaking point: Because infants, toddlers, and special needs children cannot protect themselves they are dependent on the community at large to protect them.
Script: Children are at a higher risk to be abused or neglected if they are birth to age 6 or disabled. During Federal Fiscal Year 2008, 33% of the child victims were less than age 4 and 15% of the child victims were disabled. (Source for both statistics: DHHS, ACF Child Maltreatment 2008)
Script: In Federal Fiscal Year 2008, 3.3 million reports of abuse or neglect were received by child protection agencies. 23.7 % of those were substantiated or founded for abuse or neglect, and 1,740 children died as a result of child abuse. These are deaths that may have been prevented if the abuse was reported in time.
Script: In Delaware in Fiscal Year 2009, the Division of Family Services or DFS received 9,527 reports of abuse or neglect. 62% of those reports were investigated by DFS and 1, 429 were substantiated.
Script: Delaware law mandates every citizen in the State of Delaware to report child abuse and neglect.
Script: Delaware’s Mandatory Reporting Law was amended on June 30, 2010. Not only are all persons required to report child abuse and neglect in Delaware, but agencies, organizations and entities are now required to report. This specifically includes hospitals, nursing homes, and the Medical Society, which means that the employee and the employer will be held responsible for failure to report. When you suspect child abuse and neglect call the child abuse report line at 1-800-292-9582. It is not your responsibility to investigate. It is your responsibility to report. Never assume that someone else will report the abuse or neglect. And it does not matter if your reports have not met the criteria for investigation in the past, you still must report. The Department of Services for Children, Youth, and their Families is also obligated to report allegations made against a licensed professional to the Division of Professional Regulation. This Division provides oversight for Delaware’s licensed professionals. A list of the boards/commissions can be found at http://dpr.delaware.gov . Speaking point: Do not assume that another involved professional has made the report even if they tell you they will do it. You are required by law to report and DFS wants to get the perspectives of all involved parties.
Script: Delaware law provides for immunity from liability for persons who in good faith report suspected abuse or neglect under the reporting law. The term &quot;good faith&quot; refers to the assumption that the reporter, to the best of his or her knowledge, had reason to believe that the child in question was being subjected to abuse or neglect.
Script: Nearly every state imposes penalties on mandatory reporters who fail to report suspected child abuse or neglect as required by law. Delaware’s penalty for violation was changed from a criminal penalty to a civil penalty. The civil penalty for persons or entities who fail to report child abuse is $10,000 for the first violation. The civil penalty for subsequent violations is not to exceed $50,000. Persons, agencies, organizations and entities will be referred to the Department of Justice for investigation if they fail to make mandatory reports of child abuse or neglect.
Script: Now that we understand our obligation to report child abuse and neglect, where to make the report, and the penalties for not reporting, we are going to begin to identify some of the physical and behavioral indicators for children who have been abused or neglected. We are also going to discuss parental indicators. The indicators are “red flags” that alert us to suspect abuse or neglect. You are responsible to report - not to confirm the abuse or neglect occurred before reporting.
Script: First we will define child abuse.
Script: Title 10 of the Delaware Code under Courts and Judicial Procedure defines abuse, as well emotional abuse, exploitation, maltreatment, and mistreatment. These definitions are provided in a separate handout. However, unjustified force will be explained more fully later in this presentation. Abuse is defined as physical injury through unjustified force or any of the other types of abuse listed here. The alleged perpetrator must also have care, custody, or control of the child, which means they are in a position of trust, authority, supervision, or control over the child on a temporary or permanent basis. Sexual abuse of children is also included in this statute, and it will be discussed in more detail later. But unlike physical abuse, sexual abuse does not require care, custody or control for DFS to investigate allegations of sexual abuse against a child. Next, we are going to look more closely at physical abuse. Speaking point: If asked why care, custody, and control is not needed for sexual abuse, the reason is that DFS investigated sex abuse committed by family members, but was unable to substantiate because the alleged perpetrator did not have care, custody or control. Care , custody and control is in the definitions.
Script: Here are some examples of child indicators of physical abuse. A physical indicator is unexplained bruises, whereas a behavioral indicator is a child who is afraid to go home. Please familiarize yourselves with these as they will assist you in identification of child abuse. Generally, these indicators do indicate that a child's safety may be at risk and, at the very least, the situation should be assessed by a professional able to determine the causes of these symptoms and offer the help and assistance necessary to reduce the risk to a child. Speaking point: The indicators are also described in the Professionals Guidebook for Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect (green brochure in your folder).
Script: The parent caretaker indicators describe the parent or caretaker’s reaction when confronted with the abuse allegations. It also factors in their parenting style, as well as other issues that may contribute to the parent being abusive or neglectful. For example, a parent may give an explanation that a one month old fractured his or her leg by rolling off the bed. However, the injury is not consistent with the child’s developmental capabilities, so that would be an unconvincing explanation. Infants usually roll over at 3 to 4 months. Speaking point: You can reference A.I. duPont Hospital’s Dr. Dejong who states “Babies that don’t cruise, don’t bruise.” Young children bruise on boney protuberances such as the forehead, knees, shins, and elbows.
Script: Let’s look at the difference between physical abuse and an accidental injury. Abuse is not random and does not occur by chance. It is inflicted and can be intentional or unintentional. External injuries such as burns, bites, and bruises are obviously intentionally inflicted. Unintentional injuries can occur when a parent shakes a child to stop the crying, but the vigorous shaking results in head trauma to the child. The parent likely did not intend to injure the child. An accidental injury is an injury that occurs by chance. Falls are the leading cause of accidental injury for children ages 14 and under (according to the CDC). Non-accidental injuries may be difficult to distinguish from accidental injuries. When in doubt, you should always call the child abuse report line at 1-800-292-9582. Speaking point: An injury or death that was unintentional does not preclude DFS from substantiating child abuse.
Script: Medical examination factors and parent/caretakers factors are used to determine whether the injury is accidental or non-accidental.
Script: In determining whether the injury was inflicted, the physician will consider the location of the injury, the size and shape of the injury, and the number of injuries. The Division of Family Service’s policy is children under age 9 must receive a medical examination by a physician when there is suspicion of abuse. Children over age 9 may be medically assessed by a nurse or physician’s assistant. Speaking points: The Division of Family Services’ Medical Examination Chart is in your folder. Incidentally, all of the DFS policies and procedures can be found online at their Web address. You will get the Web address later in this presentation.
Script: In addition to the physical examination, the physician will also consider whether the description of how the injury occurred and the appearance of the injury seem plausible. Medical diagnosis by the physician is critical in determining whether the injury was a result of abuse. Additionally, when there is a delay in seeking medical treatment, the physician will take that into consideration as well.
Script: Next we are going to look at how the parents or caretakers influence the investigation surrounding the injury. While conducting a joint investigation, DFS and police will consider the family’s history with DFS and whether the parent or caretaker has a history of domestic violence or other violent crimes. DFS and police will also explore whether the parents or caretakers have a history of or current mental health problems or limitations and substance abuse problems. Speaking point: DFS has direct access to DELJIS (this is what the police use on the laptops in their vehicles) and NCIC (National Crime Information Center) information.
Script: There are other factors taken into consideration when investigating child abuse and neglect. Abuse may be more likely to occur with a teen parent, with a child who has special medical needs, or with a parent that is feeling overwhelmed by child care responsibilities. Speaking point: Examples of an unwanted child: A parent that said they had wanted an abortion, but waited too long.
Script: Now that we understand physical abuse indicators, we are going to highlight the distinction between physical abuse and physical discipline.
Script: Discipline is defined as a process to help children learn appropriate behaviors and make good choices. Discipline teaches children right from wrong and how to learn from their mistakes. For example, a teen is cutting school regularly. As a disciplinary approach the parent may listen to the teen’s feelings and concerns about school. Together, the parent and teen discuss options for addressing the problem.
Script: Punishment, although it may seem interchangeable with discipline, is the practice of imposing something unpleasant or a sanction in response to the problem behavior. For example, a teen cutting school regularly is likely to have their driving privileges revoked, allowance cut, or phone use prohibited.
Script: Discipline and punishment are also associated with the physical methods, such as spankings. Delaware law does not prohibit physical discipline or punishment. What is the dividing line between discipline and punishment and child abuse?
Script: Child abuse occurs when the force is unjustified and Delaware law provides guidance for making this determination. It is defined in 11 Del.C . §468.
Script: The law differentiates justified force as reasonable and moderate. For example, a parent grabs a child and leaves marks in their efforts to prevent the child from running into the street and getting hit by a car. The parent’s force was justified since it was used to protect the child. Delaware law does prohibit unjustified force. Unjustified force includes: throwing the child, kicking, burning, cutting, striking with a closed fist, interfering with breathing, use of or threatened use of a deadly weapon, prolonged deprivation of sustenance or medication, or doing any other act that is likely to cause or does cause physical injury, disfigurement, mental distress, unnecessary degradation or substantial risk of serious physical injury or death. DFS is required to notify law enforcement of potential criminal violations against a child. Physical marks of abuse may not be present even if the force is unjustified. When determining whether the force used is reasonable and moderate, DFS and the police will consider the size, age, condition of the child, location of the force, and the strength and duration of the force. Speaking points: The list of criminal violations is in your folder.
Script: Approximately 1400 infants are hospitalized each year as a result of Abusive Head Trauma, formally known as Shaken Baby Syndrome. Of those 1400 infants, 1 in 4 will sustain injuries that result in death. Those infants who survive will suffer from mild to non acute residual effects and/or neurological damage; such as, blindness, seizures, hydrocephalus, hearing loss, cerebral palsy, learning and developmental disabilities, and speech difficulties. Abusive Head Trauma is considered the perfect crime because these non-verbal children are easy victims. Although physical injuries might not be visible on the child, it does not mean that the child is not suffering from internal injuries. Instead, err on the side of caution and if it is alleged that the child was shaken, then take the child to the Emergency Room for further evaluation.
Script: Previously, we mentioned sexual abuse. Now we are going to talk more in detail about the indicators and the Sexual Predator Act.
Script: As with physical abuse, there are also physical and behavioral indicators of sexual abuse. Early pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) must also be mentioned here as possible indicators of sexual abuse. The behavioral indicators are particularly important with sexual abuse cases, because physical evidence may not always be present.
Script: As professionals, we should consider the possibility of sexual abuse when the parent or caretaker exhibits the characteristics listed here. It is also important to note that there is evidence of a relationship between domestic violence batterers and sexual abusers due to their similar behaviors, which are often seen as controlling, threatening, secretive, self-centered, exploitative, denying and minimizing, claiming loss of control, claiming provocation, building trust during the early parts of their relationship, depersonalizing their victims, creating divisions within the family, confusing love and abuse, manipulation, discrediting abuse disclosures, lack of mental health diagnosis, high recidivism, and resistant to change. Speaking point: Remember, it is not necessary to prove a person had care, custody, or control of a child to make a civil finding or to criminally prosecute for sexual abuse.
Script: In recognition of the fact that illicit sexual activity between adult males and teenage girls contributed to the high pregnancy rate in Delaware, this legislation was intended to combat teen pregnancy by imposing more severe criminal sanctions on adult males who are significantly older than their victims and holding them financially accountable when children are born in violation of this law.
Script: A person in the position of trust, authority, or supervision is any person who assumes responsibility, whether temporarily or permanently, for the care or supervision of a child or children. The penalties are harsher for those in a position of trust.
Script: We are going to switch our focus to emotional maltreatment, which includes both emotional abuse and emotional neglect.
Script: Emotional abuse is defined as threats to inflict undue physical or emotional harm, and it may also include chronic or recurring incidents of ridiculing, demeaning, and making derogatory remarks. It is easiest to think of emotional abuse as active. For example, emotional abuse would occur if a parent told the child they were no good or the parent wished they had never been born. Emotional neglect is defined as incidents of isolating/shunning, rejecting, or ignoring a child. Therefore, emotional neglect is more passive and would occur if the parent is generally not interacting with the child or nurturing the child. Domestic violence is also captured under emotional neglect. Later in this presentation, we will touch on domestic violence. Please familiarize yourselves with the child indicators of emotional maltreatment. It is more difficult to substantiate emotional maltreatment since DFS needs to have evidence that the child’s emotional health has been impaired. Therefore, this type of finding is supported by mental health, social work, and counseling professionals working with the child.
Script: Let’s discuss what to look for with the child’s parents or caretakers. The parent or caretakers may interact with the child by withholding love, seeing the child as bad or evil, ignoring, blaming, or rejecting the child, feeling unconcerned about the child or unwilling to accept help for the child’s problems. Speaking point: DFS actually breaks emotional maltreatment into separate emotional abuse or emotional neglect findings.
Script: Now we are going to define neglect.
Script: Title 10 of the Delaware Code under Courts and Judicial Procedure defines neglect. As with abuse, the alleged perpetrator must have care, custody, or control of the child. The parent or caretaker must also have the financial means to provide care for the child. Neglect occurs when the parent or caretaker also fails to provide necessary care, which may be food, shelter, or medical care, or the parent or caretaker engages in substance abuse and the abuse impacts the care of the child, or the parent or caretaker fails to provide supervision. Speaking points: Educational neglect/truancy must be reported by the Court. DFS accepts these reports when a parent has not been compliant with court ordered school attendance for his or her child. DFS accepts reports alleging life-threatening medical neglect. This category includes failure by a parent/caretaker to use equipment such as an apnea monitor or respirator, to provide medications for health problems such as diabetes or asthma, or to practice therapies in the home for a child such as suctioning of the airway as directed by a physician for the purpose of preventing death and sustaining life. This finding does not include cases governed by 16 Del. C. §913 (Church of Christ Science). Generally, DFS will not accept a report alleging a parent/caretaker is not giving a child a medication that is not needed to sustain life, but rather to alter the child’s behavior (e.g., Ritalin for ADHD). DFS believes it is the parent’s/caretaker’s choice to administer behavioral medication.
Script; Please review the child indicators of neglect, which includes a child who has been abandoned or who has no caretaker at home. A child left alone in a car is also included in this category. Speaking point: Any time you think a child is at imminent risk of harm or death, such as a baby locked in a hot car, you need to contact 911 immediately before calling the Report Line.
Script: Parents often show signs of current mental health problems or limitations or substance abuse problems in these particular cases. Speaking point: Neglect includes a lack of supervision of the child.
Script: There appear to be very few states with specific regulations that specify the age a child may be left alone. Delaware has no such law. The general recommendation is that children under the age of 12 should not be left home alone. Nevertheless, for any aged child, the child’s level of functioning, maturity, physical and mental health, length of time left alone, and the time of the day are taken into consideration in determining whether the parent acted appropriately in leaving the child alone. For example, leaving an extremely impulsive 12 year old home alone over night would also be inappropriate. Speaking point: Some organizations train girls under age 12 about babysitting. Be mindful that these situations will be investigated if reported to the Division of Family Services.
Script: Let’s discuss Dependency next.
Script: Title 10 of the Delaware Code under Courts and Judicial Procedure defines dependency. As with abuse and neglect, the alleged perpetrator must have care, custody, or control of the child. In contrast to neglect, the parent or caretaker does not have the financial means to provide care for the child. Dependency occurs when the parent or caretaker also fails to provide necessary care, or the child is living in a nonrelated home on an extended basis, or the child was placed with a licensed agency that cannot complete a suitable adoption plan. Speaking point: Again, all the definitions are included in your Title 10 handout in your folder.
Script: Parents may place their children with family members, but they may not place their children with non-relatives on an extended basis without the approval of DFS. The term extended basis is used to suggest that the child resides in the home as opposed to just visiting. DFS will explore the appropriateness of the placement through interviews, a home assessment, and background checks. Speaking points: The Division of Family Services will determine why the child is residing with a non-relative caretaker and if the child can be reunited with family. In addition to the home evaluation of the non-relative caretaker and a criminal background check, the Children’s Department’s database will be searched for any activity. What is an extended basis? One of the keys in making this determination is considering whether the child is “residing” with rather than “visiting” the non-relative. Interviews with the child and parents are crucial to understand why the child is not with parental caretakers. To be clear, DFS must make this determination. You cannot make a decision on your own that the child is staying with a non-relative for an extended visit and not make a report.
Script: Safe Arms for Babies allows a parent to leave their newborn (14 days or younger) in any Delaware hospital emergency department. They are also given immunity from criminal prosecution for the abandonment of their child. Speaking points: If asked - DFS has not had one case since this law was enacted. If an inquiry is made about recommending this option for mothers with post partum depression the response is: A medical diagnosis is needed for post partum depression. Post partum depression is treatable for many females and males so permanent relinquishment of the child is not the best option.
Script: In making a determination of child abuse or neglect, DFS will also assess substance abuse and domestic violence occurring in the home.
Script: Child abuse and neglect and substance abuse are inextricably intertwined. An estimated 40%-80% of the 3 million children who come to the attention of the child welfare system each year live in families with substance abuse problems, according to numerous surveys of child welfare agencies nationwide. Additionally, children from substance abusing families are more likely to be placed in foster care and to remain there longer. Speaking point: Substance abuse in and of itself is not considered child abuse. The substance abuse has to impact the child’s care in a negative manner that could be physical or neglectful. For example, a parent may drink a case of beer every weekend, but DFS will not investigate a report alleging only that a case of beer is being consumed. There would have to be a correlation that a case of beer was consumed then the child was battered or the child was left unsupervised or otherwise not cared for properly.
Script: DFS accepts reports alleging Driving under the Influence and Boating under the Influence when a child is present. These types of reports are made by law enforcement. This offense can impact a person’s ability to work in healthcare, childcare, or a public school.
Script: DFS accepts reports from hospitals regarding prenatal drug use when an infant or mother tests positive for drugs at birth. The effects of exposure may include low birth weight, premature birth, failure to thrive, and neurobehavioral symptoms. A plan of safe care will be developed which will reduce the child’s risk upon discharge from the hospital. Speaking point: A plan of safe care is not the same as a Safety Plan used by the Division of Family Services to maintain a child safely in the home. A plan of safe care could be services that are offered by the Division of Public Health’s Child Development Watch Program, for example, or services provided by A.I duPont Hospital for Children. If the presenter is questioned further about DFS Safety Plan procedures prior to discharge, please refer the inquiring party to Linda Shannon, Program Manager for Intake & Investigation (302) 633-2663.
Script: Research suggests that in 30 to 60 percent of families where either domestic violence or child maltreatment is identified, it is likely that both forms of abuse exist. In a national survey, researchers found that 50 percent of men who frequently assaulted their wives also abused their children.
Script: We mentioned several of these indicators earlier in this presentation when we were reviewing sexual abuse. However, it is important to reaffirm the similarities between sexual abuse and domestic violence perpetrators.
Script: Any individual who commits felony or misdemeanor level domestic violence that is witnessed by a child, either by sight or sound, can also be charged with endangering the welfare of a child, a class E or G felony. Speaking point: Law enforcement should make a report to the Child Abuse Report Line upon charging.
Script: What is my role after a child discloses abuse or if I have a reasonable suspicion of abuse or neglect? Your role is to make a report to the Child Abuse Report Line.
Script: The child should not be interviewed beyond the disclosure. To reduce the trauma to the child, interviews will be conducted by the multi-disciplinary team. This team will be identified later in the presentation. Speaking points: Only obtain enough basic information to make the report: (1) how the child was abused or neglected (type such as physical or sexual) or why the child is afraid he or she will be abused or neglected, (2) who is the alleged abuser, and (3) when the alleged abuse occurred. Questioning the child beyond obtaining basic reporting information or questioning a child more than once could prevent DFS, law enforcement, the Department of Justice, and the Children’s Advocacy Center from conducting an effective investigation and hinder a civil substantiation or criminal prosecution.
Script: All suspected child abuse and neglect in the state of Delaware must be reported to the child abuse report line at 1-800-292-9582. Even when you know the case is active with DFS and further abuse or neglect is suspected you must call the child abuse report line. Obviously, when a child’s life is in danger, you should call 911 immediately. Speaking point: DFS also receives reports from hearing impaired individuals via agencies that have TTY capability.
Script: Every report is reviewed by a DFS Report Line Supervisor. If informed that your report does not meet criteria for investigation and you continue to have concerns, you should ask to speak to a report line supervisor. The Report Line worker is required to give his or her name if you request it, as well as their supervisor’s name. Speaking point: The phone numbers for the Report Line Supervisors has been included in your folder.
Script: Please understand that as a mandated reporting entity, when there is no reporting source there will be no way to confirm that you fulfilled your responsibility to report. Speaking point: Once you give DFS your name, you are no longer anonymous. Nevertheless, DFS will still not divulge that you made the report. It is helpful to have the reporter’s name and contact information in case DFS or law enforcement has additional questions. It is not uncommon for the party under investigation to tell other people that DFS told them the reporter’s name. They are doing this so they can find out who made the report.
Script: HIPAA does not preclude reporting suspected child abuse. Speaking point: Remember, there is a penalty for not reporting child abuse and neglect.
Script: The information you provide when making a report assists DFS in determining whether the report meets criteria for investigation and when it does - how quickly to respond.
Script: The report should be made by the person who spoke to or observed the child, because the report line may have additional questions. Speaking point: Regarding quality assurance, DFS Supervisors and most DFS administrators are assigned random cases to review on a monthly basis. This also includes rejected reports.
Script: In addition to making the report, professionals should complete the Mandatory Reporting form. The form can be found online at the DFS website. Speaking point: This slide only shows the front page of the form. It should be completed and mailed to the address on the front of the form within 72 hours after making the report. This form provides DFS with additional documentation about the report. The form can also be used as a guide when making an oral report. The front page contains the demographic information and the back page is where you will describe the abuse or neglect. Diagrams are also available on the back page for medical professionals to document injuries. A copy of the form is in your folder.
Script: The Division of Family Services receives reports for all children in the State of Delaware that have been abused or neglected. Upon receipt of the report, DFS will do one of three things: accept the report and investigate the allegations; refer the report to law enforcement for investigation; or reject the report. Speaking point: If asked There are three criteria for investigation of a report: Report involves a child from birth to age 18 Report alleges child abuse, neglect or dependency or risk thereof Report alleges intrafamilial or institutional abuse Intrafamilial and institutional abuse are defined in Title 10 of the Delaware Code that discusses Family Court. The definitions are included in your folder.
Script: Children are best served when there is collaboration among the entities investigating child abuse and neglect.
Script: Script: DFS will share information when there is a signed release of information. However, the multidisciplinary team will exchange information when it is relevant to an investigation involving a shared client. Speaking points: If you have already made a report that was accepted for investigation and need to speak to the caseworker, but do not know the caseworker’s name, call the Report Line and leave your name. If you know the name of the caseworker, call them directly. A new abuse or neglect incident requires a new report to the 800#.
Script: Now we would like to discuss some other types of abuse or neglect that are potential warning signs of child abuse or neglect.
Script: Animal abuse, elder abuse, and child trafficking have a strong correlation with child abuse and neglect.
Script: Studies have shown that serial killers or other individuals who have committed mass murders have a history of animal abuse during their childhood.
Script: Please note the similarities between physical, behavioral, and family or caretaker indicators of elder abuse to child abuse and neglect. If asked - Source for Slides 40-42: Adapted from Consortium for Elder Abuse Prevention Protocols, Coalition of Agencies Serving the Elderly, San Francisco, California. Distributed by Judith L. Warren, Ph.D., Extension Program Leader–FDRM, Professor and Extension Gerontology Specialist, Texas AgriLife Extension Service, Texas A&M System, College Station, Texas.
No script Speaking point: Occasionally, DFS and the Division of Services for Aging and Adults with Physical Disabilities conducts investigations for both issues within the same family.
Script: Although it’s not widely recognized, child trafficking is an emerging concern in Delaware and nationally. Speaking point: As you can see, when one type of abuse or neglect is present, you need to be aware that other types of abuse or neglect may also be present.
Script: Finally, here’s a list of useful State of Delaware websites, which provide additional information and resources related to child welfare. Thank you for taking the time to participate in this training that will increase awareness of reporting child abuse and neglect.
Presenters – Do not discuss specific Division of Family Services cases in front of the entire audience. If an attendee wants to discuss a specific case, ask them to contact Kriston Lowry-Sims whose number is included in their phone number list. Kriston handles constituent relations for the Division.