Family Shelter Service, an agency providing help and hope for victims of domestic violence and their children for 40 years, is looking to hire an experienced Court / Victim Advocate - Bilingual Spanish REQUIRED.
This full-time (40 hours/week) position is responsible for providing legal advocacy services to victims of domestic violence and their children.
The Court/Victim Advocate:
Assists and accompanies clients and witnesses through Order of Protection-related court procedures.
Provides emotional support, offers information and referrals, and helps clients identify options.
Offers support and information for victims of domestic violence where there has been police intervention, as directed by the DuPage County Domestic Violence Protocol.
Works closely with the State’s Attorney’s Office, civil and criminal courts, and members of law enforcement.
Collaborates with co-workers to develop effective programming; to support one another in our professional efforts; and to create and maintain a professional and respectful environment in which growth and healing can take place for both clients and staff.
Duties and Responsibilities:
Commits to building programs which support faster, greater, more equal access to services so that our clients can thrive, not just survive.
Assists and accompanies clients and witnesses through court procedures relating to Orders of Protection; provides information and emotional support.
Screens police responses reported to Family Shelter and provides outreach to identified victims through follow-up calls and written materials.
Assists with relevant grant monitoring and reporting.
Assists in training Family Shelter staff, volunteers, and interns.
Conducts public education programs and police trainings related to court and victim advocacy services.
Participates in agency-wide client staffings, as needed.
Develops and maintains positive working relationships with community partners, including the staff of the Victim Witness Program and the State’s Attorney’s Office; the Family Protection Unit of the DuPage County Sheriff’s Department; and county police departments.
Has strong knowledge of appropriate community referrals, advocacy, case management, and domestic violence support, particularly within the criminal justice system.
Advocates with other agencies and the legal system on behalf of clients (i.e. State’s Attorney, Legal Aid, DCFS, Sheriff’s Office, etc.)
May perform some specialized duties (i.e. court follow-up contacts, educational group sessions, police department liaison, etc.)
Prepares proper, timely documentation for client files (i.e. intake information, case notes, etc.)
Attends appropriate workshops, conferences, etc. to enhance professional development and understanding of issues in the fields of domestic violence and prevention.
Performs other duties as assigned.
Supervised by the Court & Victim Advocacy Coordinator, who reports to the Director of Safer Communities.
Works with staff, volunteers, and interns throughout the agency.
Establishes and maintains working relationships with community referral agencies and legal system personnel.
Qualifications and Characteristics:
Education: Bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, social service, or related field preferred; minimum of an associate’s degree required.
Experience: Prior experience in social services or domestic violence field preferred. Experience with Orders of Protection and/or individual domestic violence support is particularly preferred.
Training: 40-hour Domestic Violence training strongly preferred, and required at the first available opportunity. Illinois Certified Domestic Violence Professional (CDVP) certification preferred.
Service Delivery: Must demonstrate an empathic, non-judgmental, service-oriented attitude in work with clients. Recognizes clients as the experts of their own lives; partners with clients to recognize and build upon their strengths. Is a strong advocate for victims within the judicial system. Understands the impact of trauma and Trauma-Informed Care.
Personal: Demonstrates self-awareness, insight, and a commitment to ongoing professional growth. Values and practices respectful, non-violent communication.
Technical: Knowledge of advocacy and crisis intervention skills a plus. Must demonstrate good verbal and written communication skills; must possess good organizational skills.
Leadership: Responds appropriately in varied situations and is able to function independently. Demonstrates professionalism, flexibility, and good judgment. Demonstrates commitment to teamwork and a collaborative decision-making model.
Bilingual/bicultural REQUIRED for this position (English/Spanish). Demonstrates effectiveness working with diverse populations.
Must have privately owned vehicle, valid driver’s license, good driving record, and liability insurance.
Position may require some variable evening or weekend hours. Travel between locations and partnering sites required.
Must be able to operate general office equipment; able to lift 50 pounds.
Located in Wheaton, Illinois, Family Shelter Service offers a competitive salary, comprehensive benefits package including medical, dental and vision, flexible work schedule and the opportunity to participate in the 403(b) retirement program.
Family Shelter Service is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age or disability
About Family Shelter Service
Family Shelter Service transforms lives by offering help and hope to those affected by domestic violence. The agency offers a comprehensive domestic violence program in DuPage County. All services are free of charge and confidential. Operating 365 days each year, Family Shelter Service provides immediate safety for victims of family violence by offering: a 24-hour hotline, DuPage crisis shelter, court advocacy and counseling services – in English and Spanish – for women and children, male victims and abused elderly. In addition, we provide a program specifically focused on the needs of children. For more information, please visit our web site at www.familyshelterservice.org