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Counseling & Advocacy

Our state-certified domestic violence counselors help victims cope with trauma from abuse. Our counselors advocate for victims to ensure their rights are upheld and that systems are responsive to each victim’s unique needs and safety considerations. Our counselors are ready to listen and provide support.

Housing Advocacy

Our counselors advocate for and advise clients about their rights in tenant/landlord relationships as victims of domestic violence and tenants. Advocacy can include working collaboratively with private landlords, property managers, and public housing authorities to complete an early lease termination, porting of a Section 8 voucher, and emergency transfer within public housing due to safety concerns. DVCC counselors advocate for our clients to help them access housing resources from local community social services agencies and Coordinated Access Network housing resources.

General housing counseling might include counseling victims on general landlord/tenant relationships, rent affordability, housing search techniques, accessing local public and low-income housing resources, establishing short- and long-term housing SMART goals, and connecting to local resources for first-time home ownership.

Legal Advocacy

The Domestic Violence Crisis Center provides legal advocacy for victims of domestic violence. DVCC’s Legal Advocates are present at arraignments and domestic criminal hearings for our clients in the Stamford and Norwalk courthouses.

  • Legal Advocates assist with preparation of Temporary Restraining Orders.
  • Attorney Advocates provide legal advice and representation for TRO hearings.
  • Legal Advocates assist with the criminal judicial process from initial arraignment through final disposition.
  • DVCC Legal Advocates participate in weekly docket meetings attended by State’s Attorneys, Law Enforcement and Family Relations to ensure victim advocacy and participate in pre-trials with judges and attorneys.
  • Provide one-on-one legal consultations to assist victims with family legal issues, including child support, custody, alimony and divorce.
  • DVCC’s legal department provides weekly and monthly family law legal clinics with the assistance of volunteer attorneys.

Medical Advocacy

Health care systems are often the point of entry for victims seeking assistance immediately following a physical domestic violence incident, and our advocates play an important role for victims providing support and guidance while they are navigating the healthcare system and getting medical treatment. Advocates can provide immediate, onsite services at hospitals, clinics, doctors’ offices, and any other medical facility. We are committed to establishing comprehensive collaborations and strengthening alliances within the health care system in order to improve the physical, psychological, and emotional well-being of victims of domestic violence.

Financial Advocacy

Our counselors advocate for and counsel clients about their rights as victims of domestic violence and consumers. This includes advocating to credit agencies for clients’ rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act; establishing affordable debt repayment plans; and negotiating for more affordable payment plans or payment due dates with utility, insurance, and medical service providers. Our counselors work with financial service providers in the community to bring greater understanding of hardships due to financial abuse, and to prevent these hardships from becoming barriers to our clients’ ability to accessing financial resources in the community.

Counseling can include supporting victims as they complete financial court documents; implementing budget strategies; income increase and expense reduction strategies; general credit counseling; establishing affordable debt repayment plans; and establishing short- and long-term SMART financial and savings goals.

Employment Advocacy

Our counselors advocate for and counsel clients about their rights as victims of domestic violence in the workforce under state laws regarding personal days and unemployment benefits.

Counseling can include connecting clients to financial resources for community training and educational opportunities, creating and updating resumes, mock interviewing, and implementing job searching and network techniques.

Individual & Group Counseling

We offer short–term individual counseling with survivors of domestic violence to help them understand the effects of trauma, identify options and goals, and develop safety plans. We offer group counseling which fosters a supportive environment that helps to lessen feelings of isolation, self-blame and denial.

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