With remarkably high statistics like these, Gordon County is working to decimate the problem, and since 2002 has had the Gordon County Domestic Violence Outreach.
The outreach recently obtained an additional advocate for victims of domestic violence to assist with issues they may be going through.
Debbie Lane is the new addition and will serve as a client advocate. Recently she was given permission, in the form of an order, signed by Judge David K. Smith, of the Cherokee Judicial Circuit, to represent victims of domestic abuse.
“As advocates for victims of domestic abuse, they are authorized by law to assist in the preparation of petitions for temporary protective orders,” said Smith. “Ms. Peters and Ms. Lane always accompany the victims to the hearings in open court, and have them well prepared for those proceedings.”
Once the hearing takes place and the temporary protective orders are established the court sets up an actual trial where the judge has the opportunity to hear both sides of the case, explained Smith.
The temporary protective orders are put in place to ensure the well being of the victim and the victim’s safety.
Smith also explained how the judges of this judicial circuit are fortunate to have the resources of Ms. Lane and Ms. Peters.
The outreach also offers individual support, financial assistance and emergency housing for victims, explained Lane.
To receive help from the Gordon County Domestic Violence Outreach, according to Peters, someone may call the outreach on behalf of the victim, or they can call themselves. The victims then come into the office, and the outreach determines if the person is qualified for assistance.
To be qualified for assistance the victim must have some sort of relation to the abuser, albeit a child or a previous or existing relationship, and the outreach tends to look for threats of physical violence and, or stalking.
According to Peters, the outreach strives to employ degreed individuals. All the employees also complete numerous hours of continued education to further their knowledge of cases of domestic violence and how to assist victims.
“Debbie is a wonderful addition to our staff,” said Peters.
According to Lane and Peters, both passionate about helping people in domestic violence situations, and both women have histories in this field of work.