Date of Award

5-1-1993

Degree Type

Thesis

University or Center

Clark Atlanta University(CAU)

School

School of Social Work

Degree Name

M.S.W.

Department

Social Work and Public Health

First Advisor

Professor Amos Ajo

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine the Criminal Justice System as it relates to the child victim. The study describes the sexually molested child in the preliminary stage of criminal court. As well as the physically abused child in the same level of court. In addition, the study identifies the Child Abuse/Sexual Assault Project of the Victim-Witness Assistance Program located in the City of Atlanta Municipal Court. The study sites examples and randomly selected case studies which describe the process and various issues which may evolve when children are required to participate in the judicial process. In addition, the study identifies the Victim-Witness Assistance programs child abuse sexual assault project as an instrument designed to empower child victims by advocating for their rights and various allowances for the child victim/witness who must appear in a criminal court hearing. The study found that the child victim has much to contend with. Children are not equally equipped to handle the intricacies of the legal system. The study also addresses the systems response to the advocate, which allows the advocate to assess the appropriateness of diversion (or social work intervention) in lieu of prosecution. The study revealed that a number of cases were successfully diverted. Lastly, the Child Abuse Sexual Assault Project allowed social work intervention in almost 100% of the child abuse/sexual assault cases which were heard in the City of Atlanta Municipal Court in the year 1992.

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Social Work Commons

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