Creating a Map to Navigate Missouri's Abuse and Neglect Investigations System

October 13, 2021

Missouri's adult abuse reporting system is complex and difficult to navigate for the mandated reportersand other professionals responsible for protecting individuals with disabilities. Current gaps in the system for reporting the abuse, neglect, or exploitation of individuals with disabilities creates barriers for securing their safety. Gaps in the system for reporting also make it difficult to ensure perpetrators of the abuse are held accountable for their actions.

To address the system gaps, UMKC IHD partnered with the Missouri Developmental Disabilities Counciland other Missouri organizations on the statewide victimization task force. The task force consists of numerous stake holders from law enforcement, disabilities services organizations, SB40 Boards, prosecutors, and protection and advocacyagenciesin the state of Missouri. A priorityof the task force isto streamline the system of abuse reporting.

Out of this priority, UMKC-IHDapplied for and received a grant from the Missouri Developmental Disabilities Council to developtheMissouri Adult Abuse & Neglect Investigations System interactive map. The map is primarily intended for the use of the stakeholders and agencies on the Missouri Developmental Disabilities Council's victimization taskforce.

"We created the map so that the taskforce stakeholders who work in the fields of disability, reporting, investigation, and the criminal justice system could use it to improve the abuse reporting system and better work together," said Amelia Reighard, the project's Principal Investigator.

But Reighardsaid the map can be used other ways. State agencies can applythe map as an internal training tool for newly hired staffand the map can also be used to educate the public on how an abuse report moves through the criminal justice system.

The Missouri Adult Abuse & Neglect Investigations System interactive map captures each step of the reporting and investigations process. Itincludespop-up information for everystep of the process,a written description of the steps in the map, a glossary of terms, and recommendations for how the map can be used for training, advocacy, and systems enhancement.

Access Interactive Map