Back to News
Amberly’s Place: Domestic Violence cases up 6%

Domestic violence cases increased by 6% over the same period last year, according to Amberly’s Place.

“Perhaps more alarming than the number of cases is the level of violence and significance of the injuries we are seeing,” noted Tori Bourguignon,the agency’s executive director.

Amberly’s Place provided services to 304 primary and secondary victims in October.

Secondary victims are those who witness and/or are directly impacted by the abuse of the primary victim.

Bourguignon pointed out that this marks the third consecutive month of over 300 victims.

The family advocacy center, a nonprofit organization, provides services to victims of abuse in Yuma County and parts of Imperial County. It serves about 3,000 primary and secondary victims every year. They are victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, elder abuse, child abuse, both physical and sexual, and human sex trafficking.

The center has a response team that is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

“Does anybody know what the one thing we don’t do might be? What’s the one thing that doesn’t happen in Amberly’s Place? Anybody know? We’re not a shelter. Nobody lives at Amberly’s Place so let me be abundantly clear about that,” Bourguignon said during a recent update to the Yuma City Council.

Yuma County has one domestic violence shelter, Catholic Community Services Safe House.

“Our victims, when we respond on scene 24 hours a day, if they’re domestic violence victims and they need shelter, our first priority is to try to get them into Safe House. If the Safe House is full, then Amberly’s Place attempts to cover the cost of possibly a night in the hotel room until we can get them into a safer situation,” Bourguignon explained.

Amberly’s Place is a one-stop shop. “We have the prosecutor, somebody from forensic nursing, a forensic interviewer, a victim advocate, law enforcement, all in the same room, collaborating for the greater good of the people that we’re called to serve on any given day,” she noted.

“We are honored to be able to work with our first responders, public safety personnel. (Fire) Chief (Dusty) Fields, (Police) Chief (Tom) Garrity, our firefighters and our law enforcement are folks that we work with on a daily basis, and we’re grateful for their partnership and for the fact that they keep us safe when we’re on-scene. So thanks to both of them,” Bourguignon added.

The average cost per case for a family advocacy center investigation is about $2,900, which includes a medical exam, forensic interview and advocate assigned to the case.

“If we were to take that same victim and they were to go to our hospital for a medical exam, and have to do all of the things that go with the services that we provide, it would be roughly 36% beyond that. So it is a significant cost savings,” Bourguignon noted.

This data is from about four or five years ago. With inflation, Bourguignon guessed the savings are now about $1,500 to $2,000 per case.

Upcoming Events

View Full Calendar of Events

Latest News

View All News