RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — This week, Wake County leaders and non-profits are talking domestic violence. When it comes to domestic violence homicides, Wake County recently led the state.
According to local non-profit, InterAct, Wake County led North Carolina in domestic violence-related homicides in 2012 and 2016.
The non-profit also states in 1/3 of the City of Raleigh’s Police Districts, domestic-related calls ranked in the top 3 calls for service.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have experienced sexual violence involving physical contact during their lifetimes. County leaders and the non-profit are working to turn that around, bringing up the idea of a new family justice center.
Those like Rachel Gonwa with InterAct believe the idea will be one safe location to help domestic violence survivors and their families.
“This is something that is happening in our community,” Gonwa said. “We serve probably around almost 10,000 victims directly each year.”
Monday, Gonwa and others talked with Wake County leaders about the need for a family justice center to help treat victims.
“We know that this is a really important problem that we have got to fix,” Wake County Commissioner Matt Calabria told CBS 17. “We are going to be applying a multi-agency model.”
Calabria said this involves different groups coming together to solve problems.
“That means victim assistance, medical assistance, folks to help shepherd people through the judicial process,” he said. “Everything that people might need as they go through the process of recovery.” One recommendation from InterAct, moving partners, including agencies and services into a 6,000 square foot space to help families.
“They might need civil legal services. They might need medical services, mental health services. maybe employment services,” Gonwa said. “Having these all in one location where a survivor can access them, instead of having to go to a number of different places in our county.”
Members with InterAct also want to strengthen relationships with survivors on the road to recovery.
Calabria told CBS 17 they’re going to have more conversations about this moving forward. Meanwhile, InterAct members plan to meet and take road trips to visit other models and communities about this.
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