The MDT at the Children’s Advocacy Center of Suffolk County recognizes that a concern of child abuse can be a crisis for a child and the family, and works to minimize the stress for both through a supportive and comprehensive response.
The MDT’s purpose is to reduce the number of times that a child has to speak about their abuse and to help families access safety and services.
The Multi-Disciplinary Team Investigation includes an interview which provides a child the space and time to talk about what happened - in their own words. Team members observe and listen to the interview. All members of the team then work together to create an action plan for support and services based on the needs of the child and family. Our MDTs are dedicated to safety and healing for every child and family.
The Multi-Disciplinary Team includes:
Learn more about the MDT:
The MDT Coordinator brings together team members, schedules forensic interviews and ensures that each child receives prompt and comprehensive services.
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 skills ensure that accurate 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.
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.
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.
Mental Health Consultants/Family Advocates
Mental Health Consultants/Family Advocates are specially trained, master’s level 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.
A specially-trained Pediatric Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE Nurses) at the CAC conducts medical evaluations, consults with families, and collect forensic evidence, when needed. The CAC also works with medical professionals and child protection teams from area hospitals and the Suffolk County community.