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Expert Q&A

You have questions. We have answers. 
Here's what's coming up in our Expert Q&A series.

 

Topic: Victim-Centered Approaches to Family Violence

Date: September 27, 2017; 2:00–3:00 p.m. e.t.

Description: People who have experienced trauma, violence, and oppression are more than just these experiences. Like all of us, they are people who often face multiple challenges, they juggle multiple identities, and they have interests and relationships that sustain them. The term "victim-centered" means putting the person seeking services truly at the center of the work, which starts with engagement and recognizing that they are whole people, not just victims or survivors. These approaches require attention, openness, connection, and a capacity to engage and partner authentically with the person seeking assistance to support their well-being, which includes, but goes beyond their safety. These approaches also require examining how systems—programs and services—may inadvertently create barriers to engagement and erode well-being. In this session, we will explore empathy, transdisciplinary collaboration, the art of presence in a collaborative response to family violence, and how to shift from a focus on problems to supporting well-being for those experiencing family violence.

 

    Register    

 

Featured Hosts:

Maureen LowellMaureen Lowell has worked in the field of family violence since 1985, first in child welfare, then in domestic violence work, and then in a teaching capacity. Her primary work has been as a licensed marriage and family therapist, a perspective she brought to training and teaching over the years. Ms. Lowell began teaching a course on family and community violence in the Justice Studies Department at San Jose State University in 2001. In 2009, she became project director of the Institute for Collaborative Response for Victims of Family Violence, a project funded through the Office for Victims of Crime. The project involved working with students across disciplines to respond more effectively to family violence through interdisciplinary collaboration. Currently, she is developing and launching a certificate program based on that project. Ms. Lowell and other accomplished faculty anticipate launching the inaugural cohort for this program in 2018.
 
Ms. Lowell received her master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from Santa Clara University. She had a private practice from 1997–2014. She also holds a license in Oregon, but is not presently practicing. Ms. Lowell has worked in batterers’ intervention, and developed a program for women convicted of domestic violence and a parenting program designed to address coercion and control in parenting specifically. From 1993–2014, Ms. Lowell worked extensively in Santa Clara County, California, on various committees to improve the response to family violence. She served on the Santa Clara County Domestic Violence Council representing children exposed to intimate partner violence and was chair of the Children’s Issues Committee. She also served as vice chair and then chair of the Council. In 2012, Ms. Lowell received the Judge Leonard Edwards Champion of Peace Award. Now living in Oregon, she works on the development and launch of the Family Justice Center of Washington County.
View Full Biography
 
  
Lisa TieszenAnna Melbin has more than 20 years of experience working with nonprofit organizations and on state and federal policy issues. As the director of strategic capacity building at the Full Frame Initiative (FFI), she leads the organization’s work with diverse partners and systems to orient themselves around well-being by applying the Five Domains of Well-being framework. In this role, Ms. Melbin shapes and implements FFI’s strategy for supporting partners to strengthen their practices with a well-being focus, and she manages FFI’s well-being training, technical assistance, ongoing coaching, and other forms of capacity building. She also leads a project in California to build the capacity of communities to learn from what goes well, not just from crises, and she led FFI’s multi-year project documenting how survivors and other stakeholders understand success for domestic violence survivors.
 
Prior to joining FFI, Ms. Melbin was the housing director at the National Network to End Domestic Violence. She began her career by providing direct services in homeless shelters, domestic violence shelters, and long-term transitional housing programs for families. Ms. Melbin is an invited speaker on expert panels and at conferences across the country, and she is first author of Transitional Supportive Housing Programs: Battered Women’s Perspectives and Recommendations, Affilia, 2003. She holds masters' degrees in Social Work and Public Policy from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
View Full Biography
 
 

Expert Q&A is a national forum designed to help victim service providers communicate with national experts and colleagues about best practices for assisting victims of crime. Each month, a new topic will be presented online, and one or more subject matter experts will be available to answer your questions on this issue.

It's easy to participate:

1.) Register and submit your questions in advance.
2.) Log into the session at the time of the event.
3.) Listen to the experts discuss your questions.

All sessions are recorded, so you can watch them anytime at your convenience.

 

Expert Q&A Recordings

Each month the Nation's experts answer your questions about best practices in victim services. If you missed a past session, find the recording below.

Expand All
Topic Date Length Training Materials
Show Summary Show Host Biography August 23, 2017 1 hour Listen/View Webinar
View PowerPoint (PDF, 2.13 MB)
Summary: It takes courage to help child and adult victims of sexual abuse, assist survivors of acts of terrorism and mass violence, fight fires that may have taken people's lives, or respond to shootings and other crime scenes. It also takes commitment to do this work in spite of the personal, physical, emotional, and mental impact it can have. This session will focus on how OVC’s Vicarious Trauma Toolkit (VTT) can help you to—
  • Conduct an assessment of your agency's current capacity as a vicarious trauma-informed organization.
  • Bring leadership and staff together to review your existing capacity, identify gaps, and prioritize needs.
  • Locate resources and tools in the VTT and Compendium of Resources to help meet your identified needs.
  • Develop a comprehensive plan to become a vicarious trauma-informed organization that addresses exposure to single incidents of crime or violence and acts of mass violence and terrorism.
Host Biographies:

Janet E. Fine, M.S., is the project director for Northeastern University’s National Vicarious Trauma Toolkit project, funded by the Office for Victims of Crime, and a senior consultant for Organizational Resilience International, LLC. She also serves as a training and technical assistance provider for the State Victim Assistance Academy Resource Center at the National Center for Victims of Crime. She has held various direct service and leadership positions in victim services and children’s advocacy centers at the local, state, and national levels for 35 years.

Lisa A. Tieszen, M.A., LICSW, is a resource coordinator for Northeastern University's National Vicarious Trauma Toolkit project and a senior consultant for Organizational Resilience International, LLC. She also serves as a content expert for the State Victim Assistance Academy Resource Center at the National Center for Victims of Crime. She is in private practice as a clinician, consultant, and trainer in Brookline, Massachusetts.
Show Summary Show Host Biography July 26, 2017 1 hour Listen/View Webinar
View PowerPoint (PDF, 1.05 MB)
Summary: Incidents of mass violence and terrorism present unique challenges to the communities in which they occur. These incidents require a coordinated, cross-sector approach among federal, state, local, and tribal governments; private entities; and nonprofit organizations to drive an effective response. This session will address how to create and maintain partnerships, address resource gaps, develop victim assistance protocols, and use the protocols after an incident of mass violence or terrorism.
Host Biographies:

Krista Flannigan, J.D. is a crisis management consultant specializing in victimization issues related to high profile victimization, including mass violence. She trains nationally on coordinated community response for victims who are participating in high profile mass violence trials, as well as the impact of mass violence on victims and communities. Ms. Flannigan is an instructor and the director of the Institute for Crime Victim Research and Policy at the Florida State University College of Criminology. The Institute collaborates with victim service professionals to provide policy and practice recommendations and research and evaluation evidence. She was the director of the Community Justice Unit in the Denver District Attorney’s Office and was the director of the Victim Services 2000 program.

Herman Millholland is the founder of Millholland & Associates, an independent consulting firm with extensive management experience specializing in assisting criminal justice, for-profit, and not-for-profit organizations that serve crime victims and survivors. Management development has been his primary focus when assisting organizations with executive-level leadership, strategic planning, and staff development strategies. His services include assisting organizations with financial and grants management, legislative analysis, training and technical assistance, organizational and board development, governance, fund development, and management strategies to support the organization’s values, vision, and core mission strategies.  
Show Summary Show Host Biography June 21, 2017 1 hour Listen/View Webinar
View PowerPoint (PDF, 569 KB)
Summary: This session will address lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer or questioning (LGBTQ) youth; young men who have sex with men; and young women who have sex with women who are victims of human trafficking, experiencing homelessness, or engaged in survival sex. The session will discuss the delivery of trauma-informed, gender-sensitive, and inclusive services, and how service providers can advocate to improve their experiences with law enforcement, the criminal justice system, and the child welfare system.
Host Biography:

Meredith Dank is a research professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City. Dr. Dank is an authority on the topic of human trafficking; conducted research in 10 countries; and participated in a White House stakeholder meeting on victim services for survivors during the Obama Administration. Her current studies include Capturing Human Trafficking Victimization Through Crime Reporting and Measuring Modern Slavery in the Indian State of Bihar.
 
Show Summary Show Host Biography May 24, 2017 1 hour Listen/View Webinar
View PowerPoint (PDF, 610 KB)
Summary: Alcohol-impaired driving is a crime. Its perpetrators are criminals. And, most importantly, victims of drunk drivers and other impaired driving crashes are crime victims and deserve to be treated no differently than any other crime victim. This session will focus on how to help law enforcement support and integrate victim assistance services within their agencies and, thereby, provide both crisis and longer term assistance to victims of DUI/impaired driving crashes and all crime victims.
Host Biographies:

Dan Eddy is the executive director of the National Association of Crime Victim Compensation Boards, a position he has held since 1988. He implements national training and technical assistance activities for all state crime victim compensation programs and operates an information and resource center for compensation programs and the general public. From 1984–1988, he served as crime victims project director for the National Association of Attorneys General. He is a graduate of Harvard College and the University of Maryland School of Law. He received the Donald E. Santarelli award for contributions in public policy from the National Organization for Victim Assistance in 2001, and the Ronald Reagan Public Policy Award from the U.S. Department of Justice Office for Victims of Crime in 2008.

Colleen Sheehey-Church joined MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) in 2005, a year after her 18-year-old son Dustin drowned when the car he was riding in, driven by a teen with alcohol and drugs in her system, crashed into a river, trapping Dustin in the vehicle. Before becoming national president in 2015, Ms. Sheehey-Church served on MADD’s National Board of Directors beginning in 2010. As a devoted volunteer for MADD Connecticut serving on the State Advisory Board, she spoke at Victim Impact Panels and in high schools, and urged legislators for stronger drunk driving laws with her husband, Skip. Her tireless advocacy on a local, state, and national level resulted in her being named national president.

Sheriff John Whetsel began his law enforcement career in 1967, joined the Choctaw Police in 1973, and served as Choctaw Chief of Police for 21 years before being elected Oklahoma County Sheriff. He retired after serving as Sheriff for 20 years. He has an associate’s degree in Police Science, a bachelor's degree in Government and Sociology, and master’s studies in Criminal Justice. Sheriff Whetsel wrote many law enforcement articles and was a guest on the Phil Donahue Show, Larry King Live, Dateline, NBC Nightly News, Hard Copy, Front Page, America’s Most Wanted, and You Be the Judge. He is nationally recognized as a traffic safety advocate.

Tim Woods is the director of the Grants and Contracts Division at the National Sheriffs’ Association (NSA), where he has worked since 1997. A nonprofit, constituent organization headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia, NSA has approximately 20,000 members and represents the more than 3,000 sheriffs in the United States. Mr. Woods has also been the project director on more than 25 federal grants while at NSA. Prior to joining NSA, he was the director of Networking and Outreach on the National Institute of Justice’s National Criminal Justice Reference Service contract with Aspen Systems Corporation (now Lockheed Martin/Leidos) in Rockville, Maryland (1994–1997).
Show Summary Show Host Biography April 19, 2017 1 hour Listen/View Webinar
View PowerPoint (PDF, 610 KB)
Summary: Providing comprehensive health care to survivors of sexual assault is critical to minimizing the long-term consequences of this traumatic experience. That is where a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) can help. This session will focus on how to start or improve a SANE program in your community with OVC’s SANE Program Development and Operation Guide.
Host Biographies:

Susan Chasson, M.S.N., J.D., SANE-A, is a family nurse practitioner and certified nurse midwife at the Merrill Gappmayer Family Medicine Clinic, and she is the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) coordinator for the Utah Coalition Against Sexual Assault. As the statewide SANE coordinator, she provides education and assistance to health care providers and other professionals to improve the immediate response to victims of sexual violence. As a volunteer, Ms. Chasson has worked on projects to reduce sexual violence, including developing primary sexual violence prevention strategies for nurses and helping to write an amicus brief to the Maine Supreme Court to maintain immunity for reporters of child abuse.

Jennifer Pierce-Weeks, R.N., SANE-A, SANE-P, Education Director for the International Association of Forensic Nurses (IAFN), working with project partners, developed and implemented IAFN's 40-hour online Sexual Assault Forensic Examination adult/adolescent training program with a 16-hour clinical skills workshop through a grant from the National Institute of Justice. Ms. Pierce-Weeks regularly presents nationally on a variety of forensic nursing-related topics, including child and adult sexual assault, intimate partner violence, strangulation, child maltreatment, and Sexual Assault Response Team development.
Show Summary Show Host Biography March 22, 2017 1 hour Listen/View Webinar
View PowerPoint (PDF, 581 KB)
Summary: Organizations that serve these youth should be well grounded in trauma-informed care. This session will address how to mitigate the risk for both (re)victimization and criminal offending, the victim/offender overlap, responding to youth victims of crime, and the complex ethics and mandatory reporting requirements involved in this work.
Host Biographies:

Mitru Ciarlante has more than 25 years of leadership in programs advocating for child and youth victims. She created a comprehensive children’s advocacy program model, started a statewide children’s advocacy task force, established peer education programs, and organized a statewide youth activist network. Working through her consulting firm (ACT for Change) and as director of the Youth Initiative at the National Center for Victims of Crime, Ms. Ciarlante has experience creating trauma-informed, direct service program models and curricula for responding to childhood victimization. She received extensive training from the Child Trauma Academy and the National Child Traumatic Stress Network.

Angela Downes is an attorney. Her work focuses on public service, policy, and legislative efforts to protect the public trust. She provides training, policy expertise, and technical assistance to nonprofit agencies on the interpersonal violence issues of child abuse, child protection, domestic violence, human trafficking, and elder abuse. As a senior program attorney with the Vera Institute of Justice, an organization dedicated to working with government agencies, Ms. Downes worked with prosecutors and district attorneys' offices to improve the criminal justice system through technical assistance, policies, resolution of conflict, programs, and advocacy.
Show Summary Show Host Biography February 15, 2017 1 hour Listen/View Webinar
View PowerPoint (PDF, 681 KB)
Summary: Now that the VOCA Final Rule has been released, many more nonprofit agencies can apply for funding to assist unserved and underserved victims. The VOCA Final Rule released some previous restrictions in the VOCA Victim Assistance Guidelines, but this does not necessarily mean every state’s statutes, rules, and/or policies have changed. This session will provide some best practices on how to navigate this complicated state system to maximize your agency’s ability to build capacity in your organization and increase services to our most vulnerable victim populations.
Host Biography:

Grace Call brings extensive experience working with victims of crime to enhance programs across the Council of State Governments (CSG) Justice Center and deliver technical assistance to justice reinvestment states. Prior to joining the CSG Justice Center, she was a visiting fellow at the Office for Victims of Crime at the U.S. Department of Justice, and directed the VOCA Victim Assistance program for the Office of Crime Victims Advocacy in the State of Washington. Ms. Call previously led the Utah Coalition Against Sexual Assault. She started her work with victims in the late 1990s as a volunteer at the Rape Recovery Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. She received her B.S. in Gender Studies from the University of Utah.
Show Summary Show Host Biography January 27, 2017 1 hour Listen/View Webinar
View PowerPoint (PDF, 345 KB)
Summary: Substance use can be a coping mechanism for a trauma response to being trafficked; however, it can also be the mechanism that ensures control by traffickers on human trafficking (HT) victims/survivors. This session will address procedures, for example: How does addiction play a role for survivors of HT experiencing trauma? What should service providers know about substance abuse when responding to survivors of HT or investigating HT? How to balance the substance abuse with the victimization and the trauma that occur?
Host Biographies:

Tracy Busse is a licensed professional counselor and approved clinical supervisor who has provided therapeutic services to children, adolescents, adults, and families for more than 12 years. She specializes in working with adolescents and women who experienced various forms of trauma from sex trafficking, childhood sexual abuse, physical abuse, psychological abuse, and other forms of developmental trauma. Ms. Busse has training in several evidence-based practices for treating trauma. Additionally, she provides therapy to adults and adolescents who have challenges related to grief/loss, substance abuse, depression, and family issues. Ms. Busse believes in providing individualized, holistic care through a gentle, compassionate approach that leads to healing and restoration. In addition to providing psychotherapy, she provides training and awareness to the community around the issues of sex trafficking and exploitation. She was a member of the Georgia Governor’s Office Task Force for 5 years and worked with the community to develop training for caregivers and childcare workers. Ms. Busse led therapeutic trainings for safe homes, shelters, and other human service professionals with strategies for working with survivors of sexual exploitation and complex trauma. She co-created a therapeutic model for working with survivors of sex trafficking and led multiple trainings to the therapeutic community in Georgia. Ms. Busse partnered with Moody Bible Institute as an adjunct professor to create a curriculum for an Intro to Sexual Exploitation course, as well as an online course for educating students about sex trafficking. While working as the clinical director for Wellspring Living, she developed residential and transitional programming for adult and adolescent survivors of sexual exploitation. In these programs, Ms. Busse was able to develop new leaders in the fight against human trafficking, create innovative treatment approaches for survivors, and advocate for the needs of women and girls who have been sexually exploited.

Elisabeth Corey is an advocate working against childhood trauma and a life coach for trauma survivors. She offers one-on-one guidance, virtual groups, and email workshops to help survivors build awareness of their inner conversation and heal their trauma. Her guidance is informed by her personal recovery after a childhood of family-controlled sex trafficking and abuse. She trains recovery helpers in the holistic impact of complex trauma and using trauma as a source of connection as opposed to separation. She raises awareness of familial abuse and trafficking through legislative advocacy, media interviews, conference presentations, and published writings.

 

If you would like to access Guest Host sessions prior to January 2017, please view them on the OVC website.

What is Expert Q&A?

Expert Q&A is a national forum designed to help victim service providers communicate with national experts and colleagues about best practices for assisting victims of crime. Each month, a new topic will be presented online, and one or more subject matter experts will be available to answer your questions on this issue.

How do I register and submit my questions for an Expert Q&A session?

You can register for an upcoming session by visiting the What's New page and selecting the "Register" button. When you register for a session, you will be prompted to submit one to three questions in advance.

What are the technical requirements to participate in an Expert Q&A session?

In order to participate in the session, you should make sure that you have:

  • A strong Internet connection, preferably a hardwired connection.
  • The latest version of Adobe Flash Player installed.
  • Computer speakers or a headset to hear the audio.

You can test your Internet connection and Flash Player on the Adobe Connect Diagnostic Test page. You should see four green checkmarks to indicate that you are ready to connect to the Adobe Connect meeting.

How do I join the session?

If you registered for the session, you should have received an email confirmation with a meeting URL. Simply click on this link at the time of the event to enter the room as a registered participant.

If you did not register for the session, you can still request to enter as a guest by going to this website. Select the option for "Enter as a Guest," type your name in the "Name" field, and click the "Enter Room" button. Please note that you may not be able to join as a guest if registration is already filled to capacity. Register in advance to secure your spot in the session.

I am having issues logging into the session. What should I do?

Check the following simple items to help resolve access issues.

  • Make sure you are connected to the Internet.
  • Make sure you have downloaded the latest version of Adobe Flash Player.
  • Disable popup blocker software.
  • Clear the browser’s cache.
  • Try connecting from another computer.
  • Make sure you are accessing the correct URL.
  • If you registered for the event, enter the room with your registered email address.
  • If you were unable to register, try entering the room as a guest.

You can test your Internet connection and Flash Player on the Adobe Connect Diagnostic Test page. You should see four green checkmarks to indicate that you are ready to connect to the Adobe Connect meeting.

If you continue to experience issues, please email ExpertQA@ovcttac.org for assistance.

I missed the session. Where can I find the recording?

Recordings of past sessions are posted on our Past Sessions page, where you can view them at any time.

My question was not addressed during the session. How can I contact the host?

If your question was not addressed during the session, please email ExpertQA@ovcttac.org.