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Victim Advocacy Program

Wayne County Clerk Cathy M. Garrett is a member of the Wayne County Council against Family Violence and networks with various community agencies to provide assistance to domestic violence victims.

The Wayne County Clerk's Office works cooperatively with the Third Circuit Court Bench with respect to all court-related functions, and even more closely with the Family Division's Judges concerning the filing, disposition and enforcement of Personal Protection Orders (PPOs).

Our office collaborates with the Third Judicial Circuit Court, the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office and various law enforcement agencies, including shelters to aid victims of domestic violence and stalking. The Wayne County Clerk's Office is the initial contact site for persons seeking to file a PPO. Trained advocates within our office meet one-on-one with victims filing PPO’s and conduct interviews with the victim / litigant to determine the appropriate type of filing and paperwork necessary to file the action in Circuit Court. VOCA funding makes it possible for these advocates to provide information to the citizens, including referrals to various community agencies, accompaniment for victims during court proceedings, and follow-up contact with the victims of domestic violence and stalking.

Should you be an individual visiting our office and seeking a PPO while needing medical assistance, the Social Service Specialists will refer you to any available (free) clinics or their own local physician or hospital for medical assistance and/or follow-up services.

All victims of a crime are referred to law enforcement agencies to ensure that criminal activity is properly reported, while many individuals are referred to the Prosecutor's Office for serious criminal matters. Any persons experiencing landlord / tenant issues are referred to the District Court and/or Legal Aid Services to address these issues. Department of Human Services referrals are given to persons in need of housing, food, or shelter information, in addition to various other community agencies. Free legal clinic referrals are discussed with persons that are indigent or in need of legal advice on housing, divorce(s), and Friend of the Court and landlord matters.

The primary goal of the Personal Protection Order Victim Assistance Project is to minimize the emotional stress that victims of domestic violence and/or stalking often experience when filing in Pro Per for a Personal Protection Order at the Wayne County Clerk’s Office. Emotional support and guidance is also provided for those victims attending court proceedings.

The Wayne County Clerk’s Office has acquired two additional Social Service Specialists that are proficient in both the English and Arabic language, as well as the English and Spanish language, to provide assistance to the victims of domestic violence where language barriers exist. The addition of these advocates to our staff has greatly assisted the citizens of Wayne County, a culturally diverse community in need of more diverse programs.

Not only is our office wholly committed to ending domestic violence and stalking, it is committed to providing public awareness and education on domestic violence to the community.