Multidisciplinary Team Investigations
The Multidisciplinary (MDT) Team Investigation is the heart of the CAC's response to allegations of child abuse. MDT Teams allow for a prompt, sensitive, interagency response to reports of alleged child sexual abuse and serious physical abuse, as well as child witnesses to violence. The MDT also provides extensive supportive and follow-up services to children and their families.
Each person on the MDT is dedicated to providing complete and effective services to children and their families.
The CAC Team includes:
Team Coordinator: The Team Coordinator brings together team members and schedules forensic interviews of children when they are conducted as part of an investigation.
Law Enforcement: Police detectives are assigned to investigate reports of child abuse. They are responsible for collecting evidence, interviewing witnesses and alleged perpetrators, making arrests when appropriate, and helping to ensure the child and family's safety.
Assistant District Attorney: The Prosecutor decides whether someone should be charged with a crime, what crimes to charge, who should be charged, and then presents evidence in court to a judge and/or jury.
Victim/Witness & Family Advocates: Advocates are the "link" between the child and family and the Team. They are the main contact for the family throughout their case, providing information about victim rights, addressing safety concerns, providing referral information, and helping the family through the court process.
Forensic Interviewer: Forensic Interviewers have specialized training in conducting interviews of children who may have been abused or witnessed serious crimes. They speak with children about their experience while the rest of the team observes from behind a one-way mirror. The Interviewer's training and skill ensures that reliable information is elicited from the child in a legally, clinically, and culturally sound manner.
Department of Children and Families (DCF): DCF social workers have a primary mandate to ensure the safety of children in an environment free from abuse and neglect, while preserving family life, when possible.
Mental Health Consultant: Mental Health Consultants are specially trained therapists with experience providing evaluation and counseling services to children and families. They participate in Team interviews and offer recommendations regarding follow-up evaluations and counseling. They also assist in identifying services that will be helpful for the child and family.
Medical Provider: Specially-trained Pediatric Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANE Nurses) at the CAC conduct medical evaluations, consult with families, and collect forensic evidence, when needed. The CAC also works with medical professionals from area hospitals and the Suffolk County community.