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DA Announces new reporting system and task force to handle abuse in schools

New focus on physical and sexual abuse
Stephan Abuse Task Force.png
Posted at 12:12 PM, Nov 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-14 16:31:36-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - San Diego students have a new way to report claims of physical or sexual abuse in school.

Thursday, District Attorney Summer Stephan announced the creation of a new, online reporting system for suspected abuse. She also announced the creation of the Student Safety in School Systems Task Force.

"It's critically important that these reports don't fall through the cracks," Stephan says. "The safety of our students depends on it."

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Stephan says many times, students don't feel comfortable going to school administrators or officials with claims of abuse. They fear the claims won't be taken seriously, or the allegations could be covered up. The new online system gives the students a more secure feeling that their claims will be investigated.

The task force will vet and review every submission and follow up with the appropriate law enforcement agency. They will also guide the person facing the suspected abuse to find resources and other available services for help.

This will not replace the responsibility of mandated reporters within schools, Stephan says. But it will give people another way to make sure the proper authorities hear their claims.

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Anyone is welcome to file a claim for any kind of physical or sexual abuse. But, Stephan says the main goal is to root out abuse done by teachers or other adults against students.

Links to the reporting system will be put on the webpage of every school district in the county, as well as the DA's website. You can file a report here.