Our advocacy / Forensic Interview System and Training

Forensic Interview System and Training

Over the past three years, for every 10 cases of sexual assault reports, one is child under 12 years old and about 5.5% of victims are people with mental disorders. In these reports, the victims are usually the only witness, whereas children/victims with mental disorders, due to their limitation of age and cognitive development, cannot describe the occurrence in complete forms.

If the interviewers are not equipped with knowledge of children development, mental disorder, and cognitive psychology as well as adequate interview skills, the credibility of the testimony might be low due to unclear statements and too many induction questions even though the record is done. This would lead to low prosecution and conviction rate, which would greatly harm their judicial human rights.

In order to enhance professionals' inquiry/interview skills with children and victims with mental disorders and to strengthen the scientific handling of cases and investigation knowledge of behavior evidences, MWF has actively promoted the mechanism of "forensic interview system and training" since 2013. Different from traditional emphasis on the basis of sentencing inquiries, a neutral attitude is used to objectively inquire and interview the victims, characterizing forensic psychology in the procedure. Relevant factors that might affect children's/victims with mental disorders' testimony ability (e.g.: linguistic abilities, memory, implication, trauma, stress, etc.) are taken into consideration. In the process of obtaining the testimony, questioning sentences would be used without induction implication and should be suitable for their ages, assisting them to understand the questions and to narrate the occurrence scene. By obtaining uncontaminated testimony, there is more chance for the truth to be identified, returning just and justice to children sexual assault victims and assault victims with mental disorders.