Sexual Assault Intervention Network (SAIN) Team
The Berkshire County Sexual Assault Intervention Network (“SAIN”) Team provides a coordinated, multidisciplinary response to allegations of child abuse.
The goal of the SAIN Team is to keep children safe, prevent further harm, and hold abusers accountable.
SAIN is a coordinated partnership of local agencies working together to respond to and investigate cases of suspected sexual and physical abuse and neglect. The Team consists of specially trained, multidisciplinary members, including an assistant district attorney from the Berkshire District Attorney’s Office, an investigator from the Department of Children and Families (DCF), state and local police investigators, a victim/witness advocate, a mental health consultant, a forensic interviewer, and a pediatric sexual assault nurse examiner.
The SAIN Team Approach follows a Children’s Advocacy Center (CAC)-model to child abuse intervention and investigation. Children are interviewed in a non-leading manner by a trained forensic interviewer in a safe, child-friendly environment. Other team members observe via closed-circuit television, thus reducing the need for multiple interviews of the child. Each team member can then use the obtained information to do their job, whether it be intervention, criminal investigation, providing medical or mental health services, or prosecution of the abuser. The Team uses a comprehensive approach and provides a safe environment for children and their families to receive the help they need. The Team’s focus is the well-being of families, and providing support and services during the intervention and investigative process. Specialized medical, mental health, and victim advocacy services are provided for victims and non-offending family members.