The Kendall County Domestic Violence Response Team was formally announced at the Kendall County Courthouse on Thursday afternoon.
The effort is a collaboration of the Kendall County State's Attorney's Office, the Kendall County Sheriff's Office, Kendall County Health and Human Services and Mutual Ground of Aurora, who provides services for domestic and sexual violence victims.
Kendall County State's Attorney Eric Weis says there are unique issues with crimes involving Domestic Violence. He says it was found that there is not enough interaction with victims, that the process for them can be overwhelming, and that victims often don't know what to expect, where to ask questions, and what resources there are.
Weis further categorized different groups of victims, from those who may be cooperative throughout the process and have resources to those who are cooperative at first but later are not due to not having resources, circumstances of family involvement, involvement with the offender, etc.
Mutual Ground Clinical Director Alisa Neary says there is a growing awareness nationwide to combat domestic violence in a, "collaborative and community based way."
Kendall County Health Department Director Dr. Amaal Tokars says the experience from violence and the court process influences a person's ability to get through it, which highlights the health department's involvement. Others, like Kendall County Board member Robyn Vickers said Kendall County is at the forefront of providing this level of programming for victims and offenders.
State's Attorney Weis says the team was able to form without the need for additional resources, other than the county board will need to approve moving Mutual Ground's Kendall County office space in the courthouse from a small room to the larger, former Civil Process room.
The team's launch is expected January 1st.