April is nationally recognized as Child Abuse Prevention Month, and the caregivers at Charlotte Hungerford Hospital’s Child Abuse Investigation Team of Northwest Connecticut (CAIT NW) are hosting a FREE community presentation on an important topic for today’s technological age – how to empower smart online choices.
The speaker is Scott Driscoll, a retired police officer and member of a federal crimes against children taskforce, who started a consulting/education business called Internet Safety Concepts. The talk will be held Friday, April 27th, in the Community Room at the Torrington Library, 12 Daycoeton Place in downtown Torrington from 9 to -11 a.m.
“Social media is a component of many of the child abuse cases the team handles. The program is for anyone with a child in their life, personally or professionally, that would like to be educated about this important topic.” said Michelle Colleoni, CAIT NW Coordinator.
For more information on CAIT NW, the community trainings offered by the team on how to handle child abuse disclosures, or to register for the event on April 27th, contact Michelle Colleoni at 860-489-3391.
CAIT NW is a program of the Charlotte Hungerford Hospital Center for Youth and Families, a Child Advocacy Center (CYF-CAC), consisting of a multi-disciplinary team of community professionals including regional law enforcement agencies, the Department of Children and Families, Office of Victims Services, State’s Attorney’s Office, Juvenile Court representatives, and advocates from the Susan B. Anthony Project. It is the team’s mission and obligation to investigate and prosecute child abuse cases in a manner that minimizes trauma to the child victim. CAIT NW covers 24 towns in Northwest Connecticut and works in conjunction with CYF-CAC to provide child abuse victims and their non-offending family members with mental health services, support groups and case management services.
CAIT NW is also bringing awareness to Child Abuse Prevention month through the “Pinwheels for Prevention” campaign. The pinwheel is the national symbol for child abuse prevention. The pinwheel itself is an image that promotes childlike notions and therefore has become the symbol for the great childhoods we want for all children. If you find yourself out and about in Northwest Connecticut, look for pinwheels on display outside agencies involved with CAIT NW.
On average, CAIT NW sees approximately 100 cases of child abuse each year. During the month of April, the team aims to educate the community on ways to keep children safe and end child abuse. Letters were mailed out to over 70 schools throughout Northwest Connecticut with a reminder of the mandated reporter statute.