RECOMMENDATION 82

Part: 
Three
Chapter: 
3

Clinical evaluators should be trained to assist children victimized through the production and use of child pornography more effectively and better understand adult psychosexual disorders.

Clinicians should be trained in the types of problems that may be associated with child sexual exploitation which results from the production of child pornography.[683] Problems with children may include generalized withdrawal or assaultive behavior. Child victims may also display specific inappropriate sexual behavior or specific target sources of anxiety (e.g., men with beards).

Counselors treating these children must also be trained to work effectively with families and other caretakers of victims (e.g., foster parent, extended family child care, professionals). Child caretakers need help to understand possible future behaviors of child victims, alleviate anxiety and avoid creating unnecessary abnormal behaviors as a result of adult inappropriate over-reactive expectations. Parents of five year old victims might be more understanding of and more effective in dealing with recurrent bedwetting or sexual behavior if they are prepared.[684]

Clinicians evaluating child pornography victims also need training in legal and judicial procedures to assure that the evaluation and counseling process does not conflict with the proper disposition of the criminal case.

Notes

  1. In addition to requiring certain individuals to report known and suspected cases of child maltreatment, California law now requires mental health professionals to complete coursework or training related to child abuse and neglect. The Bill provides

    ASSEMBLY BILL NO. 141

    ADDITION TO BUSINESS AND PROFESSIONS CODE, SECTION 28

    The Legislature finds that there is a need to ensure that professionals of the healing arts who have demonstrable contact with child abuse victims, potential child abuse victims, and child abusers and potential child abusers are provided with adequate and appropriate training regarding the assessment and reporting of child abuse which will ameliorate, reduce, and eliminate the trauma of child abuse and neglect and ensure that reporting of child abuse in a timely manner to prevent additional occurrences.

    The Psychology Examining Committee and the Board of Behavioral Science Examiners shall establish required training in the area of child abuse assessment and reporting for all persons applying for initial licensure and renewal of a license as a psychologist, clinical social worker, or marriage, family, and child counselor on or after January 1, 1987. This training shall be required on time for all persons applying for initial licensure or for licensure renewal on or after January 1, 1987.

    All persons applying for initial licensure and renewal of a license as psychologist, clinic social worker, or marriage, family and child counselor on or after January 1, 1987, shall, in addition to all other requirements for licensure or renewal, have completed coursework or training in child abuse assessment and detailed knowledge of Section 11165 of the Penal code. The training shall:

    1. Be completed after January 1, 1983.
    2. Be obtained from one of the following sources:
      1. An accredited or approved educational institution, as defined in Section 2902, including extension courses offered by those institutions.
      2. An educational institution approved by the Department of Education pursuant to Section 94310 of the Education Code.
      3. A continuing education provider approved by the responsible board or examining committee.
      4. A course sponsored or offered by a professional association or a local, county, or state department of health or mental health for continuing education and approved by the responsible board.
    3. Have a minimum of 7 contact hours.
    4. Include the study of the assessment and method of reporting of sexual assault, neglect, severe neglect, general neglect, willful cruelty or unjustifiable punishment, corporal punishment or injury, and abuse in out-of-home care. The training shall also include physical and behavioral indicators of abuse, crisis counseling techniques, community resources, rights and responsibilities of reporting, consequences of failure to report, caring for a child's needs after a report is made, sensitivity to previously abused children and adults, and implications and methods of treatment for children and adults.
    5. All applicants shall provide the appropriate board with documentation of completion of the required child abuse training.

    The Psychology Examining Committee and the Board of Behavioral Science Examiners shall exempt any applicant who applies for an exemption from the requirements of this section and who shows to the satisfaction of the committee or board that there would be no need for the training in his or her practice because of the nature of that practice.

    It is the intent o£ the Legislature that a person licensed as a psychologist, clinical social worker, or marriage, family, and child counselor have minimal but appropriate training in the areas of child abuse assessment and reporting. It is not intended that by solely complying with the requirements of this section, a practitioner is fully trained in the subject of treatment of child abuse victims and abusers.

  2. Anticipatory guidance as designed by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Health Care Service is a useful model.