Tips for Parents Bringing Their Child to CFAC
Should I talk to my child about what happened?
No. If your child brings up the subject and wants to talk about it, listen without questioning. Be sure to reassure your child that you will be taking care of them. If your child does tell you additional information, please contact DCS or Law Enforcement.
How do I explain to my child what is going to happen?
It is helpful to inform your child that someone wishes to talk with him or her about what was reported. However, it is equally important not to rehearse with your child or tell your child what to say. You should let your child know that they will be in a safe place and the adults they are visiting will let them know exactly what is happening each step of the way. Avoid describing CFAC as a doctor’s office, as this often confuses children or they fear they will have to get a shot.
May I watch the interview?
No. Due to the sensitive nature of these investigations, it is necessary to provide a neutral setting for the child. This allows them to feel comfortable to speak freely without the influence of other individuals in the room.
How long will my visit last?
All visits are different depending on the situation of the child. Depending on the attention span, talkative nature of the child, severity and history of alleged abuse, etc., interview times vary greatly. Please allow time for a brief meeting with our family advocate to gather information, the forensic interview with the child and a post-interview meeting.
Where do I go when I get to CAPS?
You do not need to enter through the main door of CAPS. You can access CFAC by using the door on the right side of the building (opposite the elk and flagpole). Ring the buzzer next to the door to gain access into CFAC.
What happens after the interview?
After the interview is completed, a DCS and/or Law Enforcement representative will speak with you about what steps will be taken next.
Who can I ask about the interview?
DCS and Law Enforcement are the only agencies able to answer questions regarding your child’s interview. The information they provide may be limited due to the fact that this may be an ongoing investigation. They will tell you everything necessary to keep your child safe.
What if my child needs a medical exam?
The CFAC staff will work collaboratively with DCS and Law Enforcement representatives to ensure a medical exam is scheduled if necessary. If a medical exam is needed, arrangements will be made to have your child seen at the hospital. The hospital staff are trained to provide exams in a manner which is sensitive to past trauma and that allows the child to be in control of the exam. Medical exams are free of charge and are not billed to the family’s insurance.
How do I access additional services?
You will likely meet with a CFAC family advocate during your child’s interview and you will have a chance to ask and talk about potential services needed. The CFAC family advocate can assist with questions you may have and ensure you are aware of other community resources that may be helpful to you and your family.
What if my child needs mental health counseling?
The DCS representative can assist you in getting linked with counseling services. Upon request, the CFAC family advocate will provide additional follow up to families regarding mental health referrals and accessing appropriate support services.
How much is a visit to CFAC?
There is no cost to families or children for any services at CFAC.