NEWTON, NJ - Last year, the first Domestic Violence Response Team (DVRT) was formed for the town of Newton and Andover Township Police Departments, as well as for the New Jersey State Police (Augusta Barracks).
Domestic Abuse & Sexual Assault Intervention Services (DASI), the local organization that spearheaded the efforts of the last formed team (click here
for article in The Alternative Press about the effort), is once again seeking individuals in the community with the interest to help others for the above three police agencies.
“DVRT's have been successfully established all over the State of New Jersey and it is an area in which Sussex County is lacking,” according to Jamie Bernard, Executive Director of DASI.
New DVRT members will be well-equipped to assist the Newton and Andover Township Police Departments and NJ State Police in incidents involving domestic violence. Individuals that are accepted onto the team will undergo a 40-hour volunteer training program that begins October 2013.
Those interested in applying for the team must complete an application, undergo a personal interview and criminal background check and provide references. Applications are available with DASI by calling (973) 579-2386 or emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org
Following an incident of domestic violence, a team member is dispatched to the respective police department to assist the victim with support, encouragement, information and referrals. Working in conjunction with law enforcement and domestic violence professionals, each DVRT member brings their own skill sets and expertise to the team.
Sgt. Dean Coppolella of the Newton Police Department commented in last year's article how DVRT members can especially assist female victims.
“The victim may be uncomfortable speaking with a male and someone in uniform,” Coppolella said.
“The teams provide an opportunity for the community to come together and help end domestic violence and abuse," Bernard said. "Volunteers report feeling deep satisfaction that they are able to help during this critical time. They feel that they are truly making a difference in the lives of families who have suffered much pain and loss, and are helping them to move forward.”