In Spring 2019, our community identified an increase in domestic violence-related murders. Councilwoman Shirley Gonzales and Councilman Manny Pelaez asked the Department of Human Services (DHS) and Metropolitan Health District (Metro Health) for a structured assessment of domestic violence-related services. The evaluation included available services, systems of data collection and analysis, and community responses to family violence, including by law enforcement, social services, courts, and educators. The assessment also pinpointed gaps in service, and potential system improvements in incident reporting and follow up.
WHAT IS A PUBLIC HEALTH APPROACH TO DOMESTIC VIOLENCE PREVENTION?
Public health is fundamentally a science of prevention, addressing upstream factors to prevent downstream consequences. In practice, this means that upstream public health solutions like supporting positive parenting, for downstream problems like domestic violence-related homicide, take many years to change outcomes. Survivors of one form of violence are more likely to be victims of other forms of violence. Youth who have been physically abused by an intimate partner are more likely to have experienced abuse as a child1. Children who experience physical abuse or neglect are at greater risk for committing violence against peers2, teen dating violence, and committing child abuse3, intimate partner violence, and sexual violence later in life. A public health approach is not a quick fix, but slow, deep change to systems and whole communities. It requires sustained, multi-sector commitment and transparent evaluation of what is working and what isn’t to make change rooted in evidence.
Do you have an idea for us or something you would like us to know about domestic violence?
Reports & Presentations
Violence is a health issue! Stand Up S.A. is a program designed to prevent violence by treating the issue like an infectious disease.
Stand Up S.A. will focus on
- interrupting transmission
- changing behaviors and
- community norms
“Credible messengers” are hired and trained to develop relationships and trust within the community in order to “interrupt” violence.
Collaborative Commission on Domestic Violence
What is the Collaborative Commission on Domestic Violence?
The Commission on Collaborative Strategies to Prevent, Combat, and Respond to Domestic Violence is a joint City/County commission that will be implementing portions of the domestic violence comprehensive plan selected by Commission Chairs over the next three years.
A Special Order signed and entered on July 30, 2019, by Local Administrative District Court Judge Peter Sakai created the first-of-its-kind Commission on Collaborative Strategies to Prevent, Combat, and Respond to Domestic Violence. Co-Chaired by Assistant City Manager Dr. Colleen Bridger and 150th District Court Judge Monique Diaz, the Commission held its first meeting on Friday, August 16, 2019, and is the first in Bexar County to formally convene local leaders in government, the judiciary, law enforcement, prosecution, non-profits, and health care agencies with one shared vision: reduce domestic violence in Bexar County.
- Prosecution – District Attorney Joe D. Gonzales, Chair
- Judicial – Judge Mary Lou Alvarez and Judge Ron Rangel, Co-Chairs
- Healthcare – George Hernandez (UHS) and Jelynne Burley (Center for Healthcare Services), Co-Chairs
- Law Enforcement – Chief William McManus and Sherriff Javier Salazar, Co-Chairs
- Non-Profits – Patricia Castillo (Peace Initiative), Marta Palaez (Family Violence Prevention Services), and Julia Rodriguez (Texas Rio Grande Legal Aide), Co-Chairs
- Policy – Jeff Coyle (City of San Antonio) Chair
Each committee is responsible for developing a one-year work plan (PDF) to address programs and processes that can be improved to prevent domestic violence and better serve survivors.
The CCDV wants to hear from you!
The CCDV continues to seek community input and guidance to respond to the needs of survivors and their families. In addition to the work each committee has committed to completing that will engage with community stakeholders including survivors, the CCDV will be seeking ongoing community feedback and guidance.
Any community member may nominate an individual for one of the CCDV committees. Additionally, community members can provide feedback on the Commission, strategies, or share ideas through an additional form. Submissions can be anonymous!
Monthly Facebook Live Updates
Lead by a different committee each month, committee chairs and/or guests will provide a brief update on Committee status and pose a community question for feedback over the month.
- November/May - Full Commission
- December/June - Judiciary
- January/July - Healthcare
- February/August - Non-Profit
- March/September - Law Enforcement
- April/October - Prosecution
Quarterly Community Meetings
The first community meeting will be hosted Monday November 18th, 6:00 p.m. at the Bazan Library.
Additional quarterly community update meetings will be hosted in February, May, and August 2020.