ROLE PLAYERS

You should report any child abuse you are aware of or expect is happening. Report as follows:

SEXUAL OFFENCES: Closest Police Station who in return will notify the SAPS Family Violence and Sexual Offences Unit.

PHYSICAL ABUSE: Provincial Department of Social Development.

Police

NEGLECT: Provincial Department of Social Development.

CHILD LABOUR: Police or the Department of Labor.

MAIN LAWS (CHILDREN)

CHILDREN'S ACT 38 OF 2005
Keeping families together is main focus of the act.Early invention is also important
If you suspect a child is being abused/neglected Form 22 needs to be completed. 
The responsibility is for everyone to report.

CHILDREN'S JUSTICE ACT 75 OF 2008
The act is there to help, not to punish - restitution is important.
Criminal capacity for different ages -  10, 10 - 13, and 14 and over.
Children over 14 may be given the opportunity to enter a diversion program. 
Shedule of offences (Schedule 1 - petty crimes, schedule 3 - serious crimes. 

SEXUAL OFFENCES ACT 3 OF 2006
If you suspect a child is sexually abused you must immediately report it to the police, no matter the age of the alledged offender.
Compelled rape and grooming are new additions. 
 

POLICE & FCS UNITS

Sexual offences must be reported at the police station in the area where the crime took place (If it happened in another town or province, report at the closest police station).

Police are responsible for all aspects of the investigation, they cannot make decisions in which cases can be reported or prosecuted. 

You do not need to take the child with you to open the case. The police will notify the FCS unit who will take the statement of the child. 

Wherever possible the child should be supported when giving their statement. 

Ask for a copy of the statement and get the details of the investigating officer. 

Remember - Disclosure is a process not an event - the police might need to speak to the children several times. 

 FORENSIC MEDICAL EXAMINATION

The medical examiner will need the CAS number (supplied by police).

Ask the child if she/he would like someone to be present during the examination.

Prepare them for what will happen and tell the truth. Encourage kids to ask questions during the process. 

Ask for a full medical and genital examination (in sexual offences cases).

The examination should not be painful, but the child can be put under anesthetic if there are serious injuries.

The doctor will complete the form J88 (Medical evidence form).   

 CRIMINAL COURT

The prosecution must prove their case "beyond reasonable doubt".

The prosecutor should consult with the child prior to testifying. 

The child must be prepared for the proceedings, role players - address their fears truthfully.

Children needs to know their rights and responsibilities with regards to the case. 

Children under the age of 14 will receive the help of an intermediary (older children can request one).

Special needs of children must be communicated to the prosecutor.

A not-guilty verdict should be explained to children - it does not mean that no-one believed them.