Child Abuse Unit
History of the Unit
The Winnipeg Police Service Child Abuse Unit has been in existence since the early 1980's. It was developed to meet the special challenges of interviewing young victims and then bringing their cases successfully to court. Over the years, the Child Abuse Unit has worked closely with Manitoba Justice, Child and Family Services and the Child Protection Centre to develop an effective partnership in that endeavour.
In consultation with the Division #41 Child Abuse Unit Supervisor, Child Abuse investigators may become involved in the following incident types:
- Child deaths or life threatening injuries to persons under the age of 18, as directed by the Division #41 Child Abuse Unit Supervisor, in consultation with the Homicide Unit Supervisor.
- Physical or sexual child abuse committed by members of the family unit, or people in a position of trust or authority.
- Suicides of a children or youth, particularly children in care.
- Third party sexual assaults on children under the age of 14 years. (so age 13 and under)
- Threats against a child committed by an adult member of the family unit or other person in a position of trust or authority over that child.
- Physical and Sexual assaults on persons deemed "vulnerable persons" due to their diminished mental capacity or limited ability to communicate
- Historical physical and/or sexual assaults where the victim was 13 years of age or under
- Assist other units/investigations within the Service with child interviews (ie: assist GP in interviewing child as potential witness in Domestic Assault file, assist MCU in interviewing child in attempt abduction, Homicide Unit in interviewing child as potential witness, etc...)
Other Important Facts
- Members of the Child Abuse Unit work closely with Child & Family Services and are mandated to notify them of all reported child abuse cases (under the provincial Child & Family Service Act [english] [français]).
- Cases are investigated on a priority basis, with individual and public safety issues taking precedence, followed by investigative considerations such as the need to preserve evidence, etc.
- Interviews of child victims are generally videotaped. At times, those videotapes may also be used to form part of the child's testimony, thereby reducing the stress of court.
- In 2013 the Winnipeg Police Service partnered with others in Child Protection to open the Snowflake Place for Children and Youth which is a Child Advocacy Centre where investigators endeavor to complete all child interviews. The goal is to provide a child friendly environment for victims and their families to feel safe and supported. Interviews with Child and Family Services as well as preparations for court can also take place there. The Snowflake place does not take direct referrals, rather families are referred there directly by police. The Snowflake Place is located at 225 Portage Avenue.
If you wish to report a child abuse matter, please call 204-986-6222.
|Province of Manitoba - Manitoba Justice Sex Offender Notification Site
|Health Sciences Centre - Sexual Assault Program
| KLINIC Sexual Assault Crisis Line (24-hours - 204-786-8631)
|Provincial Advisory Committee on Child Abuse
|Manitoba Family Services/Child and Family Services
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