The Regina Children’s Justice Centre (RCJC) is a child-friendly integrated unit consisting of members of the Regina Police Service, child protection workers from the Ministry of Social Services, and community partners from the Saskatchewan Health Authority Child Abuse Physicians and the Crown Prosecutor’s Office. Together, the group operates as a team to review and respond to allegations of physical and/or sexual abuse of children.
On average, 325 cases are managed each year. RCJC provides an integrated child-centred approach to conducting interviews and investigations into allegations of child abuse. Each interview is conducted by a specially-trained police officer and/or child protection worker. Collaboratively, they make decisions regarding the most appropriate course of action for an investigation with the child’s interests and needs being the priority.
The structure and best case practice at the RCJC strongly reflects the principles of the Provincial Child Abuse Protocol: https://pubsaskdev.blob.core.windows.net/pubsask-prod/18812/18812-Saskatchewan-Child-Abuse-Protocol-2017.pdf. Utilizing this integrated model greatly reduces trauma to child victims.
At RJCJ, there are two dedicated interview rooms equipped for audio and video recording. The forensic interview is an audio and video recorded conversation where the child can tell their story in a safe and comfortable environment. It allows for the gathering of the maximum amount of information with the minimum amount of intrusion. RJCJ is decorated with child-friendly paintings and art work. There is a family waiting room equipped with a television, video games and DVD player. There is a separate toy room for children to play, read a book, watch television or just relax in the new surroundings.
The RCJC has become widely known by other police agencies in Saskatchewan and Canada and is recognized for its expertise and approach to child abuse investigations. In 2019, the Regina Police Service and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) initiated a one year pilot project of having a full-time designated RCMP investigator at RCJC which resulted in a permanent position in 2020. This resource enhances the team approach for complete and thorough investigations, sharing of information in a timely fashion and effective case management.
Justice Facility Dog Merlot and CARE Officer Sergeant Froh work at RCJC to assist children and caregivers throughout the investigation and judicial process. They work closely with our in house Victim Services Responder whose role is to support victims and non-offending family members throughout the investigative and court process.