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New protocol to combat domestic violence in Pima County, first month statistics in

Posted at 7:56 AM, May 10, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-10 11:08:20-04

Emerge! Center Against Domestic Abuse released its preliminary statistics from April. 

The center's CEO Ed Mercurio-Sakwa says an average of 50 domestic violence victims are screened every month. However, in the past month, a new protocol was rolled out through local law enforcement agencies and that screening number jumped to about 350 last month.

The new protocol is a concise questionnaire to combat domestic violence in Pima County. 

The questionnaire is for local law enforcement on-scene at a felony or misdemeanor domestic violence call to assess the risk-level victims are facing.

"We are seeing a lot of additional folks coming through for services which is absolutely fantastic," said Mercurio-Sakwa. "It is a huge step forward for our community's effort to make sure we are addressing this most at-risk victims and getting them the services they need."

He says they are seeing hotline calls go through the roof with a 20% surge in calls. 

"When it is put right in front of your face in black and white that the particular situation you are in is one that could actually lead to you being killed," he said. "The stark reality of that helps to undo some of the minimization we have talked ourselves into."

Mercurio-Sakwa says this is a huge step forward in the community's effort to make sure they are addressing the most at-risk victims and getting them the services they need.

Emerge! is also looking for more volunteers and donations to help with the increase in calls.