Best practices report highlighted in Washington Post
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Numerous “best practices” were on display in domestic violence criminal court yesterday.
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Court Watch Montgomery’s report “Small Actions, Big Impacts: Innovative approaches by Montgomery County District Court personnel in domestic violence cases” is highlighted in today’s Washington Post editorials!
What happens in domestic violence courtrooms changes lives – but not always for the better. This report looks at life saving approaches court personnel can easy adopt. Judges, bailiffs, clerks and interpreters can make protective orders more effective with simple steps.
- Discuss safety with petitioners
- Minimize needed trips to the courthouse
- Make sure offenders get anger management, substance abuse or mental health treatment when they need it.
- Make sure that offenders know it is a crime to violate a protective order.
- Ensure offenders know they must turn in their gun to law enforcement immediately.
- Assess the danger posed to children when setting a visitation plan
- Make sure that “no contact” means “no contact” – exchange of children should be handled by a third party.
- Prevent harassment or assault after hearings by always holding respondents for at least 10 minutes after the petitioner leaves the courtroom.