Tulsa’s Children’s Advocacy Center promotes a multidisciplinary approach to child abuse investigation. The multidisciplinary team of professionals works from one central location to investigate reported child abuse. This approach allows the team to immediately share information and eliminate duplicate efforts. As a result, investigations are expedited and children can begin their healing sooner.
The child abuse team is organized and sanctioned under Oklahoma State Statute (Title 10A § 1-9-102) and is formerly referred to as the Tulsa County District Attorney’s Task Force on Crimes Against Children (DATF). Current signatory members of DATF include:
“We deal with the unimaginable by staying focused on the job at hand.”
Sgt. Gary Stansill, former supervisor of the Tulsa Police Department Child Crisis Unit
- Tulsa County District Attorney’s Office
- Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office
- City of Tulsa Police Department
- Broken Arrow Police Department
- Owasso Police Department
- Tulsa County Department of Human Services – Child Welfare
- United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Oklahoma
- OU-Tulsa School of Community Medicine – Department of Pediatrics
- Child Abuse Network, Inc. (CAN)
Understanding that team guidelines do not supersede the statutes, rules, bylaws, policies, or regulations governing each party, the members of DATF agree and pledge to cooperate and coordinate their efforts to:
- Identify, investigate and prosecute those persons who commit crimes or acts of deprivation against children
- Maintain a multi-disciplinary child abuse team pursuant to Title 10A § 1-9-102
- Provide child victims of crime and their families with medical, psychological, investigative and other appropriate assistance
- Provide educational programs that impact the causes and effects of crimes against children
- Promote any activity chosen by the members to be in the interest of children within Tulsa County
CAN’s Role on the Team
The Child Abuse Network has three primary functions on the Team.
- Forensic interviews
CAN employs child interview specialists who conduct forensic interviews at the request of case investigators.
- Mental health services
CAN’s mental health specialist provides:
- crisis intervention
- community-service referrals for children and families
- a professional child-advocate voice in team meetings
- case-specific consultation for team agencies
- input to develop team guidelines that are child-focused
- Administration and coordination
CAN provides a full-time staff for the Children’s Advocacy Center’s overall administration and the team’s coordination.