17th Judicial DA

Adams and Broomfield Counties Put Families First by Starting the Planning Process for a Family Justice Center

February 26, 2024

Brighton, CO — The District Attorney’s Office for the 17th Judicial District, the Adams County Commissioners, and the City and County of Broomfield are pleased to announce the kickstart to our effort to create a Family Justice Center in this community. A Family Justice Center is a significant resource that helps survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault, along with their families, get the support and services they need, all in one location. The District Attorney’s Office, the Adams County Commissioners, and the City and County of Broomfield have invited the Family Justice Center Alliance, a program of Alliance for HOPE International, to help kickstart this important process. Together with Adams and Broomfield County leaders, the Alliance will lead a Family Justice Study Tour on February 28th and 29th in locations throughout Adams and Broomfield Counties to seek community and stakeholder input.

“Because of this tremendous collaboration between government, community, and non-profit organizations, we are changing the way we serve domestic violence and sexual assault victims in Adams and Broomfield Counties,” said District Attorney Brian Mason. “This change started two years ago with the organization of our Domestic Violence High Risk Team. Now we’re ready for the next big step:  the creation of a Family Justice Center, where victims and survivors can get the support they need, all in one place.”

The first Family Justice Center was created in San Diego, California in 2002, through a partnership between the San Diego City Attorney and the San Diego Police Department. It evolved out of a collaborative relationship between community-based domestic violence agencies and criminal justice professionals. The model has since been identified as a best practice in the field of domestic violence intervention and prevention by the U.S. Department of Justice and endorsed by many local and state agencies and elected officials including District Attorney Brian Mason, Adams County Commission Chair Emma Pinter, as well as Adams and Broomfield County leadership.

“There is no doubt that Adams County will be safer as a result of this much-needed facility,” said Emma Pinter, Chair of the Adams County Board of Commissioners. “Having all our resources under one roof makes it easier for survivors to navigate multiple agencies and systems at one time, without duplicating efforts. In addition, this enables us to create a coordinated response to family violence, that is inclusive of victims from all backgrounds, and prevent violence in the future. The language access, queer-affirming counselors, and no requirements of an open criminal case are part of what makes this work important.”

“When a community starts the process of a Family Justice Center, it says to all victims that we care and we are here for you for the long haul. The Family Justice Center model is the leading intervention and prevention model in America. It is a public-private partnership that brings the best a community has to offer,” said Casey Gwinn, President of Alliance for HOPE International.

The documented and published outcomes from the Family Justice Center model have included: reduced homicides; increased victim safety; increased autonomy and empowerment for victims; reduced fear and anxiety for victims and their children; increased efficiency and coordination among service providers; reduced recantation and minimization by victims when wrapped in services and support; increased prosecution of offenders; and dramatically increased community support services to victims and their children. (See Casey Gwinn & Gael Strack, Dream Big: A Simple, Complicated Idea to Stop Family Violence, and other outcomes posted online in the Alliance’s resource library).  

The Study Tour on February 28th and 29th is the next step in the planning process for creating a Family Justice Center. The Study Tour will generate momentum for developing a Center in Adams and Broomfield Counties by bringing local elected officials, policymakers, non-profit agencies, and government and community-based agencies together to start the planning process for a co-located service facility.

During the Study Tour, the Family Justice Center Alliance team will educate the community about the rapidly developing and expanding co-location model that seeks to put families first and bring professionals together under one roof. The Study Tour will begin by bringing key stakeholders together to learn more about the Family Justice Center movement at a Community Forum which will be held at the Parson's Theater in the Northglenn Recreation Center (1 E. Memorial Parkway Entrance, Northglenn, CO, 80233) from 8:30am to 9:00am on February 28th. The public and the media are welcome to attend. Media interested in attending should RSVP to Chris Hopper, the Director of Communications for the 17th Judicial District Attorney's Office, at chopper@da17.state.co.us. 

The team will also hold focus groups with potential on-site partners and survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault to learn more about how the system currently works; identify strengths and gaps in services; gather the community's history of coordination and collaboration among domestic violence and sexual assault service providers; determine the community’s level of readiness; and identify key next steps for the Center's development process.

# # #

Go Back