For children and youth, participating in the justice system as a victim or witness can be especially confusing, distressing, and even re-traumatizing. Child Victims and Witnesses Support Materials was created to support children and youth during their involvement with the justice system as a victim or witness to a crime.
Based on the input of national experts and lived experience experts, these materials are intended to teach children about how the justice system works, what their rights are, the roles of the different practitioners they’ll meet, and how they can cope with the difficult feelings they might have. For children who have to testify, there are also tips to help them prepare for going to court.
These materials were specifically designed for children of different age groups. However, you can use whichever set of materials seems most appropriate, given the child’s stage of development.
The materials pertaining to the criminal court and child welfare systems are available in the following languages—
- Chinese (simplified),
- Haitian Creole,
- Spanish, and
Additional materials offer support to youth victims and witnesses of human trafficking between the ages of 12−18.
The goal of these materials is to provide effective, trauma-informed, developmentally appropriate information and support to children in a way that they can more easily understand, so they can feel informed, supported, and empowered.
Guides for Practitioners and Guides for Parents and Caregivers in each section provide information on how to use the materials, as well as tips for supporting child victims and witnesses.