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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 73664 Find in a Library
Title: Child Abuse (From Forgotten Victims - An Advocate's Anthology, P 115-122, George Nicholson et al, ed. - See NCJ-41467)
Author(s): D J Lee; E Reed
Date Published: Unknown
Page Count: 8
Sponsoring Agency: Veterans Admin
Washington, DC 20420
Sale Source: Veterans Admin
810 Vermont Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20420
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The roles of California's police and doctors in the detection and treatment of child abuse are discussed.
Abstract: California law makes it a felony for any person to 'willfully inflict upon any child cruel or inhuman corporal punishment or injury' which results in a traumatic condition. Further, a police officer may arrest any person who willfully causes a child to suffer physical or mental harm or who willfully causes a child to be placed in a situation where he/she may suffer physical or mental harm. The role of police in investigating a child abuse call and detecting child abuse is described. Responsibilities of the police under California's child abuse reporting statute are also discussed. Doctors are indicated to be reluctant to report child abuse or neglect for the following reasons: belief that nothing will be done by the authorities, lack of training in dealing with child abuse and neglect, and reluctance to interact with other professionals in dealing with a socio-medical problem. Other reasons for their reluctance included a fear of testifying in court, drain on time and finances, additional emotional pressure, minimal personal rewards, and a reluctance to be agents of change. A suggested remedy for this multifaceted reluctance of doctors to become involved in child abuse and neglect cases is the development of a pediatric specialization of child abuse detection and treatment. The specialist would be part of a child protection team involving community and regional consultants.
Index Term(s): California; Child abuse; Child abuse detection; Child abuse reporting; Child abuse reporting statutes; Laws and Statutes; Medical and dental services; Police responsibilities
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