The Children's Justice Act (CJA) provides grants to States to improve the investigation, prosecution and judicial handling of cases of child abuse and neglect, particularly child sexual abuse and exploitation, in a manner that limits additional trauma to the child victim. This also includes the handling of child fatality cases in which child abuse or neglect is suspected and some cases of children with disabilities and serious health problems who also are victims of abuse and neglect.
Typical CJA activities:
To be eligible for CJA funds, States must be eligible for the CAPTA Basic State Grant and are required to establish and maintain a multidisciplinary Task Force on children's justice. The Task Force is to be comprised of representatives from selected disciplines involved in handling child abuse and neglect cases.
The Task Force makes policy and training recommendations regarding methods to better handle these cases, with the expectation that it will result in reduced trauma to the child victim and the victim's family, while insuring fairness to the accused.
Every three years after the initial award, the Task Force is required by legislation to conduct a comprehensive evaluation of the State's systems related to the investigative, administrative and judicial handling of child abuse, neglect and exploitation cases and child maltreatment-related fatalities and make recommendations for improvements to those systems.