Local Agencies Join Forces to Fight Child Abuse

FBISD Police Chief David Rider, Child Advocates of Fort Bend CEO Ruthanne Mefford and Fort Bend County District Attorney John Healey. Back row: Meadows Place Police Chief Gary Stewart, Sugar Land Police Chief Doug Brinkley, Regional Director of Texas Department of Family and Protective Services Jarita Wharton, Fulshear Police Chief Kenny Seymour, Rosenberg Police Chief Dallis Warren, Arcola Acting Police Chief Anthony Bingham, Child Advocates of Fort Bend Children’s Advocacy Center Program Director Fiona Remko and Katy Police Chief William Hastings.

In an effort to combat the injustices of child abuse and neglect, more than 20 agencies recently signed an agreement renewing their commitment to work together on behalf of child victims. The ceremony, hosted by the Child Advocates of Fort Bend (CAFB) Children’s Advocacy Center, was held at CAFB’s offices. The Protocol and Memorandum of Understanding details the importance of the CAFB Children’s Advocacy Center and lists the responsibilities of each agency in working child abuse cases.

“The Children’s Advocacy Center (CAC) is an important piece in the collaboration of agencies working to reduce the trauma to children going through the civil and criminal systems,” said Fiona Remko, CAC Program Director. “The Center helps to bring together those agencies charged with the civil and criminal investigations of child abuse to ensure that the unique needs of abused children are being addressed in a child friendly manner.  The Fort Bend community is very fortunate to have such a strong commitment from police chiefs and agency heads in fighting against child abuse.”

The CAC provides forensic interviews, case management services, therapy and criminal court advocacy services for free to families of abuse victims and to partner agencies. Child victims are referred to Child Advocates of Fort Bend’s Children’s Advocacy Center by law enforcement or CPS where trained specialists, social workers and therapists conduct forensic interviews, coordinate the criminal investigation, facilitate resource services, offer criminal court support and provide therapy to help children heal from their trauma

“We value our collaboration and are most grateful for all of our partners who work very hard to make sure hundreds of children receive the services and treatment they deserve,” said Child Advocates of Fort Bend CEO Ruthanne Mefford.