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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 163972 Find in a Library
Title: Children in Crisis (From Crisis Intervention in Criminal Justice/Social Service, Second Edition, P 139-190, 1996, James E Hendricks and Bryan Byers, eds. -- See NCJ-163966)
Author(s): C S Gillespie
Date Published: 1996
Page Count: 52
Sponsoring Agency: Charles C. Thomas
Springfield, IL 62704
Sale Source: Charles C. Thomas
2600 South First Street
Springfield, IL 62704
United States of America
Type: Issue Overview
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: After reviewing the nature and impact of crises for child victims, this chapter discusses traditional and innovative intervention procedures for such crises.
Abstract: Strategies and practices currently used to help children in crisis situations are not as effective as they might be. Children who are primary victims have a more urgent need for intervention that their secondary victim counterparts; however, interveners must realize that children who are secondary victims also need assistance in resolving their crises. In order for crisis interveners to assist child victims in resolving conflicts, they must be aware of the developmental strengths, weaknesses, and characteristics of children. An increased awareness of child development provides crisis interveners with essential information from which to develop appropriate questions for interviews and to make decisions about appropriate intervention strategies. Current courtroom reforms, such as providing a support person for the child, assigning a guardian ad litem, reducing the number of interviews and courtroom appearances, may also help make an adult environment more hospitable to children. Another way in which crisis interveners may help make the adult criminal justice work for children is to continue to seek alternative strategies for assisting the child. Helpful reforms include obtaining children's testimony via closed-circuit television or videotape, using anatomically correct dolls to help children communicate, using a teaching approach to investigation and prosecution, and using specialized victim assistance or advocacy programs. An additional strategy that may be used for intervention is bibliotherapy. This involves treatment through books, as children gain insights from reading fiction or nonfiction that leads to self-examination. If mothers and children read together, spontaneous discussions regarding the victimization could enhance both the victim's and mother's understanding of the crisis situation and the effects it may or may not have on each of them. Chapter questions, simulated exercises, appended information on child development, selected annotated bibliographies of books to use in bibliotherapy, and 98 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile victims
Index Term(s): Child victims; Crisis intervention; Police crisis intervention; Social service agencies; Victim services
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