What is a SAIN Team?
The Berkshire District Attorney’s Sexual Assault Intervention Network (SAIN) Team is a collaboration of local agencies who
work together to intervene in and investigate cases of
suspected sexual and serious physical abuse and provide services for victims and non-offending family members. The goal of the SAIN Team is to keep children safe, prevent further harm, and hold abusers accountable.
Who are the SAIN Team Members?
The SAIN Team consists of well-trained personnel from the Department of Children & Families (DCF), the Berkshire County Kids’ Place, state and local police, the Brien Center, a medical consultant, the Massachusetts Pediatric Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner Program, and the District Attorney’s Office. The SAIN Team Coordinator is employed by the District Attorney and has an office at the Berkshire County Kids’ Place.
What are the Benefits to the SAIN Team Approach?
The SAIN Team follows a model approach to child abuse intervention and investigation. Children are interviewed in a non-leading manner by a trained forensic interviewer in a safe and child-friendly environment. Other team members observe via closed-circuit television. This eliminates the need for multiple interviews of the child. Each team member can then use the information obtained to do their job, whether it be intervention, criminal investigation, providing medical or mental health services, or prosecution of the abuser. Specialized medical and mental health services are offered. The Team uses a comprehensive approach and provides a non-threatening environment for children and their families to feel safe and get help.