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In Clearfield County ... Commissioners condemn domestic violence
Wednesday, October 3, 2012
By Wendy Lynn Brion Staff Writer
During a work session yesterday, the Clearfield County Commissioners proclaimed October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
Marsha Learish, representing Central Pennsylvania Community Action's Crossroads Project, which serves both Clearfield and Jefferson counties, noted that last year they were faced with the crisis of losing their DuBois shelter. Since then, they have had a temporary fix of an office/safe house but it is on a month-by-month lease and is not adequate for the needs. She said incidents of reported abuse are up, but funding is down and sometimes victims have to be sheltered out of the county. Crossroads is looking for a more permanent shelter in the DuBois area. Anyone who has a building they think would work well for a shelter can call Director Susan McLaughlin at 938-3302 extension 222.
Learish said they have a shelter in Punxsutawney and there are offices in Clearfield, DuBois, Punxsutawney and Brookville. There is also a 24-hour hotline for people to call, 1-800-598-3998. Learish said they rely heavily on volunteers at the agency and also currently have 11 staff members for the four offices.
Crossroads also does prevention education in schools and community outreach, which includes presentations to community organizations. There are also support groups for adults and children. She noted that while protection from abuse orders are often utilized, sometimes they are not an option and Crossroads helps victims sort through their options and make decisions. Services may include: safety planning, individual options and empowerment counseling for adults and children, supportive educational counseling for friends and family, school dating violence and prevention programs, advocacy services, emergency shelter and relocation assistance, support groups, legal advocacy and more.
"We need help to provide this service and protect victims," Learish said.
In other business, the commissioners opened bids for a pole building for the probation department. Five bids were received and the lowest bid appears to be from 765-DECK at $61,289. The bids will be reviewed by the director and engineer, who will report back at the next meeting.
The commissioners also reappointed Joe Kendrick as the farmer director of the Clearfield County Conservation District.
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