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Action Protocols to the Child Abuse and Circular 3/2009 the Attorney General's Office

Last week the Action Protocol was signed in child abuse cases in the Community of Madrid, very good news for all who work on protection, because apart from taking several measures to ensure the welfare of children victims of abuse, can serve as a model for other communities.

This protocol sets out the measures that were included in the Circular 3/2009 on Protection of Child Victims and Witnesses of the Attorney General's Office and Action Protocol model in cases of Child Abuse Centre for Children year 2008.

Both documents reflected the measures to protect child victims of sexual abuse, with the difference that the Circular of the Office is binding and the Centre for Children document serves only as a reference model for the development of protocols such as the one approved this week in Madrid. These measures involve the alleviation of suffering of thousands of children, and adolescents in the administrative and judicial procedures that are doomed in the wake of the revelation of pain experienced.

To give you an idea, Circular of the Office means:

1. Protective measures that apply to all children, also be direct victims or witnesses of any crime, not only abuse.

2. That the cases where there is a lower priority become involved, acquiring the same priority with prisoner cases.

3. That the measures are implemented in both the adult criminal system and the penal system of the child, ie, for victims of adult offenders were under age.

4. On the statement of the child in the investigation stage: be performed by a psychologist, be recorded, behind a one-way mirror, presence of a psychologist, only if it is proved by a psychological report that the child will not harm declare. If you are not accredited, the child does not declare. This statement is made in the presence of fiscal, lawyer and judge will be recorded and considered as evidence preconstituted.

5. On declaration of those children that the judge be forced to testify in court: very young children, under 6 years, with disabilities or whose cases have been long since the offense was not declared by system, and higher they will testify by video, or without confrontation with assailant, and all measures to Save the Children has already proposed in a report in the year 2000: without the judge robe, even outside the room, declare the first boy or girl, jucie convene the first in the morning, by videoconference or at least screen, fol priests of the tutors, even outside the room, and someone from the office of victim assistance, and not be forced to swear to under 14 years.

6. That there will be no confrontations and if the judge requires, is only an expert report proving that the child does not harm declare.

7. Accepted as evidence witness statements that reference and may not be necessary if the child's statement, especially smaller.

8. That the performances will be in coordination with Child Protection agencies.

9. The interrogation of the child tax: first I will speak without asking, not make suggestive questions, The first cite the, adapt their language, asked credible expert testimony to under 3 years, and without public.

10. That in cases of separation or divorce, not require children or older 12 years to testify, only be offered the opportunity, but if you want, not report, and never ask them who they want to live.

11. The compensation to the children in cases that result in conviction was calculated by including the cost of therapeutic treatment to child.

In recent years there has been progress in the protection of child victims of abuse, but the judicial world is always perceived as a workhorse for us who come from the psychology and social. This move proved in due course will incorporate the measures promoted and that will relieve the suffering of many children, and adolescents who have had enough with being victims of crime.

There is a part of the responsibility rests with the judges, ultimately responsible for the implementation of these security measures and partly depends on the protection system of the autonomous communities, but this move was a giant step back now wanted in connection with the adoption of the Protocol of the Community of Madrid, which of course has incorporated all the measures set out in Circular.

Home, Javier and Pepa

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