As the health threat from COVID-19 continues and non-essential businesses and agencies are closed to the public, Stop Abusive Family Environments (SAFE) remains open for victims of domestic violence.

“We know home isn’t a safe place for everyone during a crisis,” emphasized Linda Farmer, SAFE outreach advocate.

SAFE is committed to continuing life-saving services for domestic violence victims, she said.

While the West Virginia Supreme Court has closed courtrooms across the state, domestic violence protective orders can still be filed in magistrate court, she explained.

Law enforcement officers can also transport victims to the SAFE shelter if they do not have their own transportation.

Victim services are confidential and free at SAFE.

Available services include the 24/7 crisis hotline, the shelter, court advocacy services to assist with filing emergency protective orders, as well as providing support for the Family Court process.

The staff is also taking the necessary precautions to help protect those being served by minimizing person-to-person contact, practicing social distancing with increased phone advocacy services, and following recommended hygiene and quarantine guidelines within the shelter, Farmer said.

SAFE services are available in Wyoming, McDowell and Mercer counties.

For help or more information, phone the 24/7 hotline at 1-800-688-6157; or, in Wyoming County, phone 304-732-8176; McDowell County, phone 304-436-8117; or Mercer County, phone 304-324-7820.

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