Archive for the ‘Victim Advocacy’ category

Statistics on Domestic Violence Deaths In Maryland

June 29, 2010

The Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence (MNADV) released a report on individuals who died as a result of domestic violence during FY 2009 in Maryland.  The report gives us information on who the victims were, their relationship to the offender, their age range, how they were killed, and where in Maryland this took place.

Baltimore County had the highest number of deaths as a result of domestic violence, with 12. Baltimore City had 10 deaths, and Price George’s County had 8.

These deaths grimly reveal the challenge that the Family Crisis Center of Baltimore County and other domestic violence agencies face as they attempt, with diminished funding and growing demand for services, in our efforts to intervene and provide safety for the families of Baltimore County.

Click on the more button below to see the full report. (more…)

Maryland Domestic Violence Statistics

March 10, 2010

The National Network To End Domestic Violence takes one 24 hour period each year to complete a 24 hour census of domestic violence shelters and services throughout the nation.

In Maryland, during that 24 hour period, there were 1,082 victims served.  To quote the census:

483 domestic violence victims found refuge in emergency shelters or transitional housing provided by local domestic violence programs.

599 adults and children received non-residential assistance and services, including individual counseling, legal advocacy, and children’s support groups.

Below are links to the full results for Maryland, and the nation:

Maryland results

National results

Video – Expert Warns Of More Familicides

April 23, 2009

familicideTerry Owens, of ABC 2 in Baltimore, speaks with domestic violence expert Dr. Richard Gelles who warns of a coming surge in domestic violence, child abuse, and “familicide”.

Click here to see a video of the interview and read the full article.

MNADV – Response to Dating Violence

March 3, 2009

Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence Coordinator/Trainer, Erin Boguski, has written an opinion piece entitled “Response to Dating Violence” that discusses the recent increase in media attention on the topic of dating violence.  Below is a portion of the article:

Celebrity news has been buzzing about Chris Brown’s alleged assault on Rihanna which occurred at the beginning of this month. On the internet, and in the sound bites from other celebrities, the response has ranged from condemning violence against women, to “hoping for the best” for both parties, or even wondering what Rihanna did to “provoke” Chris Brown. Even Harvey Levin, from TMZ, wonders why more people aren’t speaking out against violence against women. Certainly this and similar domestic violence incidents in the press strike a cord with teens and young adults throughout the nation and in Maryland. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics (2001),16 to 24 year old women experience the highest rate of domestic violence. Pregnant or parenting teens are especially at risk for abuse. Last year in Maryland, there were two teen girls who were killed by their boyfriends, and both deaths occurred in Baltimore City (MNADV, FY 2008). Certainly, the context of one’s social environment and community can influence how violence against women is perceived.

To read the full article, visit the Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence webpage.

Lethality Assessments to be conducted in all Baltimore County Precincts

February 9, 2009

In November 2007 the Family Crisis Center of Baltimore County (FCC), in conjunction with the Baltimore County Police Department – Precinct 12/Merritt Point and the Baltimore County Department of Social Services, Family Violence Unit (DSS/FVU), began a pilot project to conduct First Responder Lethality Assessment interviews with all domestic violence calls received in Precinct 12 at the urging of the Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence (MNADV). The goal was to begin to intensively intervene and provide immediate service to those domestic violence victims that scored as residing in High Lethality relationships (as determined by a police officer questionnaire derived by the MNADV from an instrument developed by Dr. Jacquelyn Campbell of the Johns Hopkins University).  The pilot project was conducted to encourage and eventually institute this Lethality Assessment process throughout Baltimore County to reach the most isolated and vulnerable domestic violence victims.

The Family Crisis Center has played a major role in this Lethality Assessment Pilot Program:

  • FCC Victim Advocates provided Lethality Assessments and follow up visits with a Domestic Violence Police Officer.
  • FCC Safe Shelter provided one designated Shelter apartment for Lethality Assessment domestic violence victims.  Additional FCC services provided to lethality assessment victims included victim support group, family psychotherapy, resource and referral.

Of the 404 Lethality Assessments conducted ( November 2007-October 2008 ) eighty four (84) domestic violence victims have connected with the Family Crisis Center for ongoing services: 21%

As of February 9, 2009 the Baltimore County Police Department has announced that the Lethality Assessment Project will be provided countywide. The Family Crisis Center will assume responsibility for three precincts (Precincts 9, 11, 12) which comprise 45% of the reported domestic violence calls to the Baltimore County Police Department. This responsibility will entail:

  • Immediate response by phone contact with officers conducting lethality assessments to make connections with and guide victims to safety and service.
  • Lethality assessment follow up home visits with the domestic violence officers, connecting domestic violence victims to safe services, such as emergency shelter and legal representation through the Family Crisis Center or other agencies.

The Family Crisis Center will be seeking additional funding to properly conduct its portion of the countywide Lethality Assessment Project. It will be seeking salaries for an additional Victim Advocate to provide home visits and advocate services, a Coordinator of First Responder telephone assistants, and an additional lawyer to represent high lethality domestic violence victims.

Victim Advocates and Police Department Team Up to Help Families During Holidays

January 15, 2009

The Victim Advocates at the Family Crisis Center of Baltimore County (FCC) solicited help for three families they had been working with who were going through a tough time during this holiday season.  The domestic violence victims, who were working with our Advocates, were reportedly all very concerned that they did not have the resources this year to give their children a Christmas.  After contacting Betty Dewey of the Essex Precinct of the Baltimore County Police Department, the Police Department volunteered to collect toys and other gifts for the three families in need.  The gifts were delivered to the families in time for the holidays.  Below is a letter from one of the mothers to our Victim Advocates:

I would like to thank you for thinking of me and my children during these difficult times.  The gifts were greatly appreciated.  It’s nice to know that there are so many people who are caring and giving.  Thank you for being God’s helpers.  Your gifts and support has made a huge impact on my life.  I wouldn’t have been able to handle things so far without the support and knowledge from the Family Crisis Center.

Thank You So Much!

The Family Crisis Center of Baltimore County and The Baltimore County Police Department of Precinct 11 work together through the Domestic Violence Partnership Program, which was started by Betty Dewey. 

The Victim Advocates at the FCC offer assistance to any adult family member experiencing physical, emotional, or verbal abuse from a spouse or intimate partner.  Victim Advocacy services include victim crisis counseling, telephone counseling, home visits, connecting victims to legal resources and educational materials, court accompaniment, victim support groups, safety planning, and lethality assessments.