The Department of Social Services offers services to women in the community who are feeling unsafe at home and need help. Our goal is to help create a violence-free community where survivors are supported and perpetrators are held accountable for their actions.
What is domestic violence?
Most often we think of physical violence—the hitting, kicking, punching, bruises, and broken bones—when we think about domestic violence, but domestic violence is so much more than just being physically harmed. Domestic violence includes emotional and sexual abuse, as well as threats, intimidation, isolation and manipulation.
While domestic violence does happen to men, it is overwhelmingly more common for women to be victims than men. According to the National Institute of Justice, 55.5% of Native American women will experience physical violence from an intimate partner at some point in their lives, compared to approximately 1 in 3 women overall.
Domestic violence isn’t about love, it is about control. Victims do not choose to be hurt; abusers choose to hurt their victims.
What services are available?
While the Pokagon Band does not have a domestic violence shelter, Samantha Hickok, Kids First Manager, has worked closely with the DV shelters in the area and can provide contact information to these programs if you are in need of immediate, emergency housing.
The Victim Services Manager/Case Worker also provides:
- Drop in support group for domestic violence survivors
- Case management
- Safety planning
- Assistance filing Personal Protection Orders (PPOs)
- Court accompaniment
- Limited financial assistance
- Educational programming and outreach
- and other programs/services
If you or someone you know are being hurt and need assistance, Contact Samantha. All services are confidential and free of charge.
Domestic violence was once seen as a private matter, a family issue, and something that victims should be ashamed of. We now know that domestic violence doesn’t just impact the victim, but rather family, friends, and others around both the abuser and the victim. This is an issue that affects the whole community, not just an individual. As a community, we strive to support victims and hold abusers accountable for their actions.
If you are interested in attending or have any questions please contact Samantha Hickok.
Who is eligible for services?
Services are now open to anyone over the age of 18 who is a Pokagon Band citizen, spouse/former spouse, partner/former partner, parent, or a member of another federally recognized tribe.
We know this may exclude some people from receiving the services they need, but since this is a relatively new program we are currently focusing on this demographic. In the future we hope to expand our services to better serve the tribal community as a whole.
Are you looking for help?
You may also contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at (800) 799-SAFE (7233), for 24-hour support and assistance.
Domestic Shelters can give you contact information for DV shelters in your area, as well as information on safety planning, danger assessment, and other topics relating to domestic violence.
If you have a smartphone, there are several apps designed to keep DV survivors safe. Check out the My Plan App for help with safety planning, threat assessments, and information on shelters in your area.
Contact Casy Kasper-Welles for more assistance.
Victim Services Supervisor
(269) 519-0809 (cell)