Legal Advocacy

Our program has many ways we can serve as a legal advocate for you as you think about your legal options and proceed through the legal system. By calling our office at 765-423-1118 or visiting our office in person at 624 N. 6th Street, you can learn about how we can provide:

•Attorney referrals

•Emotional support during proceedings and appointments

•Help with the process of filing a protective order


PROTECTIVE ORDERS

For assistance with filling out and filing a civil protective order, it is recommended that you call our legal advocate, who is located at 20 N 6th Street, to set up an appointment. Her phone number is 765-807-1208. Appointment hours can be flexible but generally they are between the hours of 9:30 and 3:00 M-F. Other arrangements can be made in certain cases. There is no charge for filing a protective order. Filing through our YWCA advocates will make the process smoother and they will be able to answer any questions you have, assist you with a safety plan and make referrals to area programs. Our advocates work very closely with the community police and prosecutors, with the goal of ensuring your safety. Please make sure you have the birth date of your respondent. Addresses are not completely necessary but they will make it much easier for the court to serve, and sometimes, without an address, the order may not be served for months.

Resources at DVIPP

The YWCA Domestic Violence Intervention & Prevention Program also can provide information on domestic violence, parenting and support groups, and how to work with the legal system. We can place calls on your behalf to counselors, attorneys, the prosecutor's office, and the police. We can help you try to find permanent housing and supply free
9-1-1 cell phones. If you don't feel safe at home, we can enlist the help of the police to get you and your children safely into our shelter.

First Step: Contact Police

If you find yourself in a situation of control, intimidation, or financial/emotional/physical harm, and the person threatening you is an intimate partner, someone you have dated, or someone you have been related to in some capacity, you must first file a police report to show you have asked for police assistance. You may be able to get a stalking protective order if the person harassing or threatening you is someone you briefly dated or someone who has bothered you on three or more instances and you have filed police reports. Stalking covers areas such as telephone calls, text messaging, e-mails and in-person contacts, Facebook messaging, Twitter, and other social media. In certain circumstances, your children also can be covered by the protective order if you can show a clear threat to their safety.

A Protective Order is a Legal Document

It is important for those filing protective orders to be aware that what is written in their petition becomes a court record and the person they are filing against will receive a copy. Keeping this in mind, protective orders can be very effective in sending a clear message to someone that the legal system will step in if they continue to harass or threaten. As long as a protective order is not being abused,  it can accomplish many things, such as helping the petitioner get their belongings back, establishing a temporary parent time visitation schedule, working with a landlord on a safety plan, and ensuring your employer that you have taken all the necessary steps for your safety.

HOPE Card

If you have a protective order that covers you for 1 year or longer and would like a HOPE card, please contact Norah Ashcraft at 765-807-1208 or email her at: nashcraft@ywcalafayette.org

If you need assistance in Spanish please contact out Hispanic Advocate Nohemí Lugo at 423 7015 or email her at nlugo@ywcalafayette.org

Si necesita asistencia en español por favor hable con nuestra asesora hispana al 423 7015 o a su correo electrónico: nlugo@ywcalafayette.org

 

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