This Power Point presentation was developed and presented by Martha Kurgan from the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services at the Virginia Department of Social Services Promising Practices conference on September 16, 2013.
The Legal Advocacy Manual provides victim advocates (as well as victims) with a comprehensive guide to help domestic and sexual violence victims in Virginia through some of the legal processes in which they may become involved. It provides both basic and intermediate levels of information about legal advocacy--what it is, the difference between civil and criminal justice systems, definitions of commonly used legal terms, and how to avoid the unauthorized practice of law, among other topics. The manual offers context for the emotional, logistical, and legal hurdles involved in protective orders, criminal prosecutions, visa applications, and divorces. It is 76 pages long and is in PDF form. Susheela Varky of Virginia Poverty Law Center updated it in June 2013 for recent changes in the law. Ms. Varky has used the manual as a resource for in-person trainings geared to victim advocates, and is available to tailor such trainings for your local Virginia domestic or sexual violence program.
Power Point describing changes to Virginia's Protective Order laws from 2011-2013 (presented to the Young Lawyers Conference of the Virginia State Bar on May 8, 2013).
In 2004, the Virginia General Assembly passed legislation stating that “the Department of Criminal Justice Services shall promote the use of local and regional sexual assault response team policy and protocol, established pursuant to subdivision 46 of §9.1-102 of the Code of Virginia, as an integral part of an effective coordinated community response to sexual assault” (Virginia Acts of Assembly, Chapter 980). The Code directs that DCJS shall “establish training standards and publish a model policy and protocols for local and regional sexual assault response teams” (§9.1-102). In accordance with these legislative mandates, DCJS developed these guidelines based on review of existing state and national protocols and best practices and consultations with local Virginia sexual assault response team members. This model protocol focuses on adult sexual assault.
This reference list provides a compilation of reports, articles, websites and practical information for communities interested in addressing or learning more about the topic of children exposed to domestic violence and trauma-informed practices. Particular focus was placed on best or promising practices.