Victims of domestic violence receive commitment from province

Minister of Children and Youth Services Yvonne Fritz
By Staff

Calgary – Three new pilot projects announced by the province will focus on supporting victims and breaking the cycle of domestic violence in high-risk families.

“Domestic violence has a devastating impact on not only the victims, but on families and communities as well,” said Minister of Justice and Attorney General Alison Redford. “We need to work together to prevent it. This goes far beyond the closed doors of a private home. It is a serious crime that affects far too many Albertans.”

Redford announced the three projects June 10 at the Canadian Domestic Homicide Prevention Conference in Calgary.

The community-based projects will receive a total of $2.4 million in funding from the province through the Safe Communities Innovation Fund.
The projects include the High Risk Management Initiative, a $1.2 million project beign managed by HomeFront. The program will look to enhance victim safety and create a long-term reduction of domestic violence rates. Under the project, offenders will be required to attend domestic violence counseling, addiction and mental health treatment, anger management and parenting classes to help prevent offending in the future.
The Maskwacis Family Violence Unit is a $489,000 initiative of the Ermineskin Women’s Shelter Society to create a specialized team to support at-risk families on the reserves of Hobbema, breaking the cycle of domestic violence. The unit will link families to appropriate services and support victims from the initial call for service through the completion of the criminal court process.
The Couples Treatment for Domestic Violence and Substance Abuse is a $750,000 initiative of the Calgary Counselling Centre to intervene and provide treatment to couples experiencing domestic violence where one partner has a substance abuse problem. The project is designed to bring both partners into treatment to encourage safe and healthy relationships.

“Family violence is a serious concern for our communities which requires all of us working together to assist those in need” said Minister of Children and Youth Services Yvonne Fritz, who announced funding for the Strengthening Families initiative at the HomeFront’s 10th Anniversary Celebration June 9. “In Calgary, over 75 per cent of the 13,000 domestic violence calls that police received in the last year involved children. I commend the Calgary Counselling Centre for responding with an intervention program that offers treatment to couples with substance abuse and addictions.”

The three projects are led by five Safe Communities partner ministries: Justice and Attorney General, Solicitor General and Public Security, Children and Youth Services, Health and Wellness, and Aboriginal Relations.

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