SAN FRANCISO—The city District Attorney’s Victim Services Division together with the Department of Child Support Services will educate victims of domestic violence about their child-support options.
“Studies show that 90 percent of domestic violence victims would like child support if it can be done safely,” said District Attorney George Gascón. “By removing barriers and providing access to child support services, we hope to help victims obtain the financial stability necessary to rebuild their lives,”
Gascon said his office is collaborating with the Department of Child Support Services to reduce incidents of domestic violence and recidivism.
There has been a dramatic increase in the number of cases over the past three years with incidents of violence between parties, according to the Department of Child Support Services.
More and more, victims of domestic violence, who are also parents, are requesting child support services to help them stabilize and increase their ability to provide for their children.
“We look forward to a successful collaboration (with the DA),” said Karen Roye, Department of Child Support Services Director.
The District Attorney’s Office and the Department of Child Support Services will hold office hours on the 1st and 3rd Monday, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. of each month, at 850 Bryant Street, 3rd Floor.
Victims of domestic violence will be able to make appointments or drop in and meet with Child Support Services representatives that can provide guidance and information about their child support options.
The District Attorney’s Office provides comprehensive advocacy and support to victims and witnesses of crime. Services are provided in English, Cantonese, and Spanish.
Victim Advocates assist victims of serious and violent crime in filing claims with the State Victim Compensation Program, offer crisis intervention and emergency assistance and provide help navigating the criminal justice system.
Advocates work with victims, witnesses and their families to identify community resources and make referrals to medical and mental health care providers.
The Victim Services Division also helps in securing restitution, assisting with witness relocation, and meeting transportation needs for eligible individuals. In 2012, the Victim Services Division served 5,410 victims representing a 12% increase in caseloads from 2011.
The Department of Child Support Services helps parents to establish paternity for their children, establish child support and medical support orders, provides support order enforcement, and collection and distribution of child support and spousal support payments.
In addition to support order establishment and enforcement services for an overall caseload serving 13,822 families, they provide a variety of programs to assist parents with barrier remediation, connections to employment resources, and child support debt repayment alternatives.
The main office is located at 617 Mission Street with business hours 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.