The role of DSS, Police and the Facility
The Role of the Department of Social Service (DSS)
Upon receiving a report of abuse, DSS has the role to determine whether or not the facility has policies and procedures in place for reporting and managing resident abuse.
It is not the Department’s role to investigate the abuse or deal with/punish the alleged perpetrators.
The Role of the Police
Police are to determine whether or not an assault occurred.
Police will interview witnesses to the victim of the alleged assault (if possible), the victim of the alleged assault and the alleged perpetrator of the assault.
Police will determine whether or not there is sufficient evidence to form a case and recommend charges.
If charges are laid, the alleged offender is dealt with via the judicial system.
The Role of the Facility
The facility will investigate allegations of abuse as per its complaints management process.
Evidence collected from the investigation will be used to recommend disciplinary action commensurate with the severity of the alleged assault and the level of evidence to prove that it occurred.
The results of investigations are confidential.
Report as soon as possible – from the point of police investigation, the trail will go ‘cold’. Provides the opportunity to check the resident for any signs of abuse – bruising, scratches.
Alleged victim, witnesses will have a fresher recollection of what happened.
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