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Civil Protection Orders

Court-issued civil protection orders provide domestic violence victims with important options while influencing batterers to stop the abuse. An integrated and consistent protection order system that coordinates issuing, serving, and enforcing court orders promotes victim safety and helps save lives. The NCJFCJ recognizes that an effective civil protection order system relies upon the interplay and interdependence of each profession’s work; judges, law enforcement, prosecutors, advocates, civil attorneys, and others. We seek to increase the capacity of communities, courts, judges, and related professionals to enhance victim safety and offender accountability through effective protection order practices.

The NCJFCJ works within a network of national organizations to promote improved civil protection order practice. We offer technical assistance to courts, judges, and other professionals to address challenges and emerging needs identified by those involved in the issuance, service, and enforcement of protection orders. In addition, we conduct webinars and workshops on topics concerning protection orders, including custody and visitation, victim autonomy, compliance review, and firearms surrender. We also provide on-site multi-disciplinary training based on an interactive curriculum designed to help communities assist victims with a unified, cohesive, and reliable response. The participatory workshop model for this curriculum brings together the various professionals needed to implement system change and improvement through coordinated community responses. Our roundtables and other structured discussions with judges and justice system professionals explore the challenging issues involving the protection order process and identify possible strategies for addressing those issues. These discussions often lead to the development of new materials or resources for judges and other professionals. Together, the NCJFCJ’s technical assistance, training, and resource development offer courts and communities the opportunity to enhance their ability to safeguard victims of domestic violence, provide for children’s safety and wellbeing through the use of child-related relief in civil protection orders, and hold abusers accountable.

This project was supported by Grant No. 15JOVW-21-GK02257-MUMU awarded by the Office on Violence Against Women, U.S. Department of Justice. The opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations expressed in this publication/program/exhibition are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women.