IFVCC News & Events

October 30, 2018 | FVCC Steering Committee Meeting: November 2, 2018




Featuring Rich Wistocki
BeSure Consulting, Training for Law Enforcement, Schools, Parents and Children

Monday June 4, 9 AM to 4 PM

Sponsored by: The 7th Judicial Circuit Family Violence Coordinating Council: Hon. John W. Belz, Presiding Judge, Hon. Jennifer Ascher, Assoc. Judge

Click here to register >>

April 5, 2018 | Register Now: Facilitating Experiential Trauma Information Training


Training Opportunity

REGISTER TODAY for this free 1-day training!

Friday, May 18, 2018
8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Bunn Auditorium
HSHS St. John’s Hospital
800 E Carpenter Street
Springfield, Illinois 62769

Sponsored by the Illinois Family Violence Coordinating Council


  • Explain the difference between cognitive thinking and experiential memory for victims of trauma.
  • Deliver the results of decades of neuroscience research as it relates to traumatization.
  • Define a newly recognized class of evidence called psycho-physiological evidence.
  • Identify the elements of the Forensic Experiential Trauma Interview process. 


Russell Strand, Executive Director of Certified FETI and Co-Founder/Managing Partner of Strand Holistic Innovative Forensic Techniques (SHIFT) LLC. Mr. Strand is an internationally recognized expert on child abuse and sexual assault investigations, domestic violence intervention, human trafficking, critical incident peer support, forensic interviews, trauma response, and culture change. He is the creator of the Forensic Experiential Trauma Interview.

Myra Ferechil, Co-Founder/Managing Partner of Strand Holistic Innovative Forensic Techniques LLC. SHIFT’s mission is to dramatically shift the paradigm to improve societal responses to individuals who have experienced trauma, victimization, and other complex experiences. Ms. Ferechil provides consultation, training, and assistance to agencies and service providers.


  • Law enforcement personnel
  • Prosecutors
  • Victim advocates
  • Judges
  • Probation
  • Social service staff
  • Public defenders
  • Mediators
  • Public health professionals
  • Attorneys

Continuing Education Credits for CDVP, CPAIP, LPC/LCPC, and LSW/LCSW will be awarded through sponsorship from the Illinois Coalition Against Domestic Violence pending approval.

Space is limited. Register today!


Questions? Contact Mary Ratliff: Mary.Ratliff@Illinois.gov

April 5, 2018 | Revised Protocol for Law Enforcement: Responding to Victims with Disabilities and Older Adults who Experience Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Abuse, Neglect or Exploitation

Community Awareness000 

In 2011, the Illinois Family Violence Coordinating Council received a U.S. Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women Arrest grant. The focus of the grant was development of an Integrated Protocol Initiative. The scope of the initiative included updating the domestic violence and elder abuse protocols for law enforcement and prosecutors and to create protocols to address violence against people with disabilities. Upon completion of the protocols, in 2013, IFVCC and its partners conducted training of trainers across the state to facilitate local implementation. As a part of the statewide roll-out, the protocols for responding to violence against people with disabilities and older adults were jointly trained. Based upon this experience, it was determined that, though there are differences between older adults and people with disabilities, there are enough similarities in victimology and support requirements between the two populations that merging the protocols will allow a more cohesive response and provide ease of use for law enforcement and prosecutors.

In 2016, in preparation for the merger of the protocols, almost 80 interviews were conducted with law enforcement, people with disabilities, and older adults. Information obtained from law enforcement officers includes the need for more training for working with people with disabilities. The greatest challenge noted by officers is the lack of resources or lack of knowledge about resources. Additionally, spending time with people with disabilities, particularly family members, was suggested as the most helpful experience to increase comfort with people with disabilities.

Interviews with older adults and people with disabilities highlighting their experiences in working with police and their advice for a better response for law enforcement is included in this guide. Information from older adults and people with disabilities indicate a more positive interaction with police when officers take time to respectfully engage and understand how a person communicates. Finally, feedback obtained through the interviews, as well as the insights gained from communicating with local council training teams and previous implementation, form the basis for the new protocols. Workgroups comprised of Advisory Committee members, Illinois Family Violence Coordinating Council staff, Local Council Coordinators and local Family Violence Coordinating Council members reviewed the protocols, updated statutes, person-first language and developed new resources for these protocols.

The purpose of this protocol is to effectively guide law enforcement in responding to people with disabilities and older adults who experience domestic violence, sexual assault, abuse, neglect or exploitation through model guidelines, investigative procedures, and legal considerations. Implementation of the protocol will allow for successful partnering with prosecutors, advocates, and others in the criminal justice system in the response to victims who are older adults or those with disabilities. Additionally, implementation supports alignment with legal mandates as well as current best practices. Law Enforcement response is critical to ensuring that victims who are older adults, or those with disabilities, have equal access to the criminal justice system in a compassionate, proactive, individualized manner. Use of this protocol will promote a more coordinated community response with law enforcement by bringing together health care, social service and adult protective services in serving older adults and people with disabilities who are victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, abuse, neglect, and financial.

View the Revised Protocol >>

March 28, 2018 | Victim to Victor Training


Event Date: April 13, 2018
Sponsor: 21st Judicial Circuit Family Violence Coordinating Council, Child Network, KC-CASA and Kankakee Community College
Presenter: Vanessa McNeal
Location: Iroquois Room, Kankakee Community College Conference Hall, 100 College Drive, Kankakee, IL 60901

Many people experience horrific circumstances and feel defined by them. How do you transition from a victim to victor mind state? In this talk, Vanessa shares her journey experiencing and navigating through multiple forms of abuse. She’ll discuss how the trauma she endured impacted her on a systems level using examples through her lived experiences. She will also share how she was able to overcome by moving from a victim to victor mindset.

View the training flyer >>

March 13, 2018 | Trauma & Resiliency Summit

Community Awareness000 

Event Date: May 10, 2018 from 8:30 AM-3:30 PM at Olivet Nazarene University in the Weber Leadership Center, Bourbonnais, IL


  • Raise awareness about the prevalence of trauma and impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs).
  • Encourage increased trauma sensitivity in agency practices, procedures, and policies.
  • Foster inter-agency collaboration.
  • Expand professional development around trauma-informed services and resiliency building.
  • Launch our local ACES CONNECTION portal, a solution oriented, action-based social network to prevent ACES, heal trauma, and build resilience.

View the Summit Flyer >>

March 2, 2018 | SAVE THE DATE: Facilitating Experiential Trauma Information: A Real Change in the Conversation May 18, 2018


Join us for a special one-day training for law enforcement personnel, prosecutors, victim advocates, judges, probation, social service staff, public defenders, mediators, public health professionals, and attorneys.

Click here for further details >>

February 14, 2018 | Implementing a trauma informed approach to sexual assault for Illinois Law Enforcement


Event Date: March 8, 2018

The Sexual Assault Incident Procedure Act addresses troubling statistics that show only a fraction of sexual assault victims report crimes to law enforcement authorities. The law was passed to encourage more sexual assault victims to come forward and increase the successful prosecution of sexual assault crimes throughout the state. The trauma of sexual assault and sexual abuse often leads to severe mental, physical, and economic consequences for the victim. A victim’s ability to recover from the trauma of sexual assault or sexual abuse has been directly linked to the response of others to their trauma, particularly the response of law enforcement authorities to a victim who comes forward to report the crime. This presentation will explore the neurobiology of trauma and the effect trauma has on the brain and memory. It will help explain why being trauma informed is crucial when interviewing victims of all violent crimes, including sexual assault.

Please register with Carole Franke, FVCC Coordinator, @ cfranke@i-kan.org by March 1

For more information >>

February 14, 2018 | RESPONDING TO DOMESTIC VIOLENCE TRAINING WITH Presenter Lt. Mark Wynn (retired)


Event Date: March 23, 2018

Topics Covered: 

  • On scene investigation- Determining primary aggressor
  • Victim Assistance
  • Finding and Helping the hidden victims, children
  • Investigating the strangulation case
  • Investigating stalking
  • Civil Liability
  • Threat Assessment

For more information >>

February 13, 2018 | The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Coping with Stress as a Responder to Victims of Violence and Trauma-Related Experiences


Featuring Dr. Olivia Johnson, DM

Event Date: March 7, 2018

This symposium will focus on understanding the causes and effects of good stress (eustress), bad stress (distress), and ugly stress (chronic) often faced by law enforcement, first responders and other professionals who come in contact with and support victims of family violence and/or trauma-related life experiences. Methods and techniques for dealing with stress will be addressed: deep breathing, cognitive/mental reframing, and recognizing early onset of stress and anger before problems arise. This presentation is part of the FVCC’s continuing effort to educate and enhance services provided by our community partners and to provide training that will improve practices and support efforts to increase victim and community safety.

For more information >>

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