County officials and CAPSA team up to benefit children

A streamlined process for initiating a child protective order is now among services offered by the Cache County's new Children's Justice Center.

CACHE COUNTY – Among the services now being offered by Cache County’s new Children’s Justice Center (CJC) is a streamlined process for obtaining a child protective order.

That service is possible thanks to a partnership between county officials and the local Citizens Against Physical and Sexual Abuse (CAPSA) organization, according to Terryl Warner, the director of the county Victim Services Division.

“If a child protective order is needed for whatever reason,” Warner explained in a routine report to members of the Cache County Council on Tuesday, “we now have a relationship with CAPSA that they have a designated person who comes to the CJC to begin processing that child protective order.

The family doesn’t have to go anywhere else. CAPSA comes to them at the CJC to handle that process.”

The initiation of a child protective order is just one of numerous services available to victims of trauma or abuse at the Children’s Justice Center.

The Cache County CJC is a child-friendly facility where victims of child abuse are interviewed and medically assessed by professionals specifically trained in the forensic investigation of abuse.

Rather than having a child endure multiple interviews while being taken from agency to agency throughout the law enforcement and child protection systems, Warner added, agency professionals come together at the CJC in a collaborative approach that results in effective, efficient and child-centered casework.

The new CJC facility in Logan officially opened on June 29. On Tuesday, Warner told county council members that the center’s staff are already interviewing children there and will also begin administering medical exams at the CJC this week.

Under Utah statutes, a child protective order can be issued by a juvenile court if a child is being abused or is in imminent danger of being abused. State laws define abuse as physical or sexual mistreatment and/or human trafficking.

That order can require that a threatening individual, legally referred to as the respondent by the court, refrain from violence against the child; not contact or communicate with the child; avoid the child’s home, work, school or place of worship; and not possess a firearm or other type of weapon.

The new CJC facility is a 6,000 square foot, seven-bedroom, 4.5-bath three-story structure with a picturesque tower room overlooking 800 North St.

The former home boasts a spacious kitchen, a sunroom, a formal dining room, two family rooms, a sitting room, a game room and a play room. The house is set somewhat back from the street and has a deep backyard with winding garden paths.

“It’s spacious enough for us to do several interviews at one time, plus medical exams if necessary,” Warner explained when the property was acquired and remodeled with $1.4 million in funds from the federal CARES Act. “The house even has different entrances that we could use to provide privacy and social distancing.”

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1 Comment

  • Frank Sterle Jr. July 28, 2021 at 6:24 pm Reply

    If society is to avoid the most dreaded, invasive and reactive means of intervention — that of governmental forced removal of children from dysfunctional/abusive home environments — maybe we then should be willing to try an unconventional proactive means of preventing some future dysfunctional/abusive family situations. Education, perhaps through child development science high-school curriculum, might be one way.

    I believe the wellbeing of all children — and not just what other parents’ children might/will cost us as future expensive cases of government care, etcetera — should be of importance to us all, regardless of whether we’re doing a great job with our own developing children. A mentally sound and physically healthy future should be every child’s fundamental right (up there with food, water and shelter), especially considering the very troubled world into which they never asked to enter.

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