We’re back with Episode 5, “The Child’s Voice in Court: The Role of the Guardian ad Litem,” for our Beyond the Bench Season 2 podcast. In this episode, we take a break from our court cases to focus on the child. Find out how the child’s perspective is represented in court, through a guardian ad litem and the child him or herself.
In today’s episode, through interviews with county department social workers and attorney, the state Guardian ad litem program, a parent attorney, and district court judges, we’ll discuss how the county department responds to a report of suspected neglect and when court action is needed. This area of the law has its own language, and you’ll learn about some new terms today, including screening in, screening out, assessment, filing a petition, and non-secure custody.
Welcome to Season 2 of Beyond the Bench, a podcast by the NC Judicial College at the UNC School of Government. Season 2 tells the story of homelessness, neglect and the child welfare system in NC. During this Season, we’ll talk about what family homeless looks like, whether homelessness is child neglect, and if and when it is, how the child welfare system responds to families affected by homelessness. We’ll do this by following two court cases from the past year that addressed child neglect because of allegations related to homelessness. Each episode represents a different stage in the child welfare process. You’ll hear from lots of different people who will share the various perspectives in a case, including shelter providers, county departments, a parent attorney, the children’s guardian ad litem, and the court.