Domestic Violence Services – COVID-19 Plan
Domestic Violence Services (DVS), a program of the Community Action Partnership, is closely monitoring all updates concerning the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Our highest priority is to safeguard the health and safety of domestic violence victims and survivors and our staff members. To help protect both the public health and the health of the DVS Team, we have enacted several changes and will continue to update as new information becomes available.
While we have reduced our on-site staffing, we continue to provide free, confidential services to victims and survivors of domestic violence 24 hours per day. We are limiting the people who enter our building to residents, staff members, and emergency personnel if needed.
Victims and survivors seeking our crisis and safety-planning services should call our 24-hour Hotline at (717) 299-1249 or text SAFE to 61222 to connect directly to an advocate.
Safe House or emergency shelter services are available for victims fleeing dangerous intimate partner violence situations. Victims seeking shelter must contact DVS directly via the hotline or text line. Law enforcement may use the hotline or LAP process to make the contact. An individual in immediate danger should call 911.
All support groups and in-person community counseling sessions are canceled until further notice. Telephone and web-based or online counseling is available. Please call our hotline to arrange to meet with a counselor over the phone or via an online telehealth platform.
Protection From Abuse orders are still available for victims of domestic violence. Some final protection order hearings have resumed at the courthouse as of June 1, 2020. The Domestic Violence Legal Center (DVLC) is available to assist individuals with information, options, and resources via telephone M-F from 8:30am – 5:00pm at (717) 291-5826.
If you are unable to reach a staff person directly, please leave a message and your call will be returned ASAP. Our legal advocate is available in the courthouse to assist with PFAs. On weekends call the DVS 24-Hour hotline to be connected to the on-call Legal Advocate for assistance.
All public events, education, and prevention sessions with which DVS was scheduled to be involved are cancelled at this time. Our staff is working to develop on line/virtual education sessions, and these resources will be made available in June and July.
Please direct any questions to Christine Gilfillan, DVS Director at CGilfillan@caplanc.org. With questions specific to information about domestic violence, events, outreach, and volunteers, email Angela Keen, Community Outreach and Volunteer Coordinator at AKeen@caplanc.org.
What can the public do to help DVS and victims of domestic violence?
1. Follow the CAP and DVS Facebook pages and Twitter accounts and share information about the availability of our services. Please be aware that victims of domestic violence may be trapped at home with their abusers, and that their situations may worsen. Although our capacity is limited, we are available to help.
2. DVS is not accepting donations of goods until our county moves into the “Green Zone.”
3. General donations to support our direct services and the needs of our Safe House residents are welcome. Visit CAPLanc.org/donate and designate DVS.
We are very grateful to the community for all of your support as we have navigated these difficult times. We will continue to keep you updated through traditional media, CAP and DVS social media (Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter), and other communication channels. Visit CAPLanc.org.
About Domestic Violence Services (DVS) of Lancaster County
Domestic Violence Services of Lancaster County, a program of the Community Action Partnership of Lancaster County, is a catalyst to eliminate domestic violence through direct service, advocacy, and social change. Over the past forty-three years, 75,593 survivors of abuse have received 379,513 nights of shelter and 572,050 hours of counseling, among other supportive services. DVS hosts regular community education and prevention sessions for many agencies, schools and faith-based organizations. For more information, visit CAPLanc.org/DVS