October 28, 2011 – October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. In recognizing its importance, all Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) facilities throughout the state are participating in programs and activities to educate and seek solutions to domestic violence.
Programs include educational literature, statistics, films, hot topic speakers, essay and poetry contests, anger management, parenting, victim panels, and events to raise money for local domestic violence shelters.
“The goal is to assist offenders in taking an inside look on how violence has affected their life and the lives of others,” said IDOC Director S.A. Godinez. “The safety of the public, employees and inmates are foremost in our operations. IDOC is dedicated to providing effective programming that will help offenders successfully reintegrate back to their homes and communities.”
“IDOC has developed programs for offenders who may have been victims of violence or have perpetrated violence on others,” said Chief of Programs and Support Services Debbie Denning. “These programs serve on many levels in helping bring awareness to the abuse, pain and healing. They also serve to be educational, inspirational and empowering.”
The IDOC Victims Services Unit also serves as another source for domestic violence victims and victims of crime. The unit will provide information, assistance and support to victims whose victimizers are remanded to the custody or control of IDOC, and to victimized employees. These services will be administered with respect, compassion and confidentiality. The Victim Services Unit will enhance victim's rights in Illinois through public forums, needed legislation, and joint efforts with other victim services agencies, departments and organizations. The Victim Services Unit can be reached at: toll free 877-776-0755 or (217) 558-2200 ext. 4006.
IDOC operates 27 prisons throughout Illinois in addition to work camps, boot camps and adult transition centers. The agency is committed to operating a safe and secure prison system as well as enhancing prison-based treatment, prevention programs and the successful reentry of inmates into society, which will lead to lowering recidivism rates.