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posted: 10/21/2013 8:16 AM

MCC forum focuses on domestic violence

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Submitted by McHenry County College

The 22nd Judicial Circuit Family Violence Coordinating Council, in cooperation with McHenry County College, will host "Substance Abuse and Family Violence: A Multi-Disciplinary Community Response" from 8:15 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, in the Luecht Conference Center at the college, 8900 Route 14 in Crystal Lake.

The program aims to develop a coordinated multidisciplinary approach to substance abuse and family violence that is needed to help the victims. The event is intended for judges, attorneys, teachers, health care providers, probation officers, law enforcement, social workers, counselors, clergy and anyone who responds to the needs of family violence victims, their families and the prosecution and sentencing of those committing the crime.

Studies indicate that women who have been abused are 15 times more likely to abuse alcohol and nine times more likely to abuse drugs than women who have not been abused, according to "Domestic Violence: A Handbook for Health Professionals" by Lyn Shipway.

Two nationally known keynote speakers will address the relationship between family violence and substance abuse on the part of the victim and/or offender. They will examine the questions: How does substance abuse perpetuate the crime, and what is the effect of trauma and substance abuse in the context of domestic violence?

Larry Bennett, a licensed clinical social worker and professor at Jane Addams School of Social Work, University of Illinois at Chicago, will present "Substance Misuse and Partner Violence: What We Know and What We are Doing."

Patricia Bland, director of Substance Abuse Training and Technical Assistance at the National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma and Mental Health, will present "Understanding Trauma and Substance Abuse in the Context of Domestic Violence."

The event will feature four informative breakout sessions on related topics, including "Assessment, Treatment and Collaboration: Brings Better Outcomes for Clients;" "Men's Issues;" "Domestic Violence Court in the 22nd Judicial Circuit," and "Teens, Alcohol and Violence."

This one-day event is presented by the 22nd Judicial Circuit Family Violence Coordinating Council in partnership with McHenry County College. The program is made possible with funding by Rosecrance Health Network, Gateway Foundation Alcohol and Drug Treatment, Direct Counseling Inc., McHenry County Regional Office of Education and McHenry County College.

The program is open to the public and costs $15 per person. Continental breakfast and lunch is included. Continuing Education Units (CEU's) and five Minimum Continuing Legal Education Credits (MCLE's) will be provided.

To register, call the Shah Center at (815) 455-8593 or email For more information, call Bev Thomas at (815) 479-7792 or email