Fairfield County, Ohio
Traditionally, Fairfield County provided parenting time services for cases involving the government’s Child Protective Services. Also, Fairfield County offered a program to establish parenting time orders. However, there was a gap in services relating to visitation or parenting time services for cases in which domestic violence was involved – and when there was no other involvement by the government. To bridge the gap in services, the County Commissioners partnered with the Domestic Relations Court to offer a Visitation Center using a donated house located near the Courthouse. The Visitation Center provides supervised visitation and monitored exchanges to adults and children who have been affected by domestic violence, mental illness, or substance abuse. By providing a secure place for visitation and exchanges, Fairfield County has improved public safety. The Visitation Center was established with donations to the County and is sustained by combined resources of the Court and County Commissioners. With part-time hours, more than 1,000 visits and exchanges occurred in 2016. With sound policies and procedures, the Center has had no critical incidents of violence. The collaboration addresses a growing need where there are few resources and limited advocacy.
Ms. Carri L. Brown