If you watch the news or any television police dramas, you know that the "drug deal gone bad" is the source of much of our community violence. But if you read the newspapers lately, you will find a disturbing trend with the "exchange of children gone bad" causing some horrific violence, and indeed, deaths of family members.
Here are some recent examples:
A common thread to all of these tragedies is the lack of a competent supervised visitation provider facilitating the exchange of the children. Throughout Vermont, there is a supervised visitation and safe exchange Center located in every county. These programs are crucial to help eliminate some of this violence.
It does not take a lot of time to supervise an exchange and offering this service can be a natural progression of supervised visits to unsupervised visits. Some programs have facilities that can accommodate 5-6 exchanges simultaneously. Programs typically charge $5-$20 per exchange and this modest investment can be life saving for parents and children in custody disputes.
Stories like these are all too common, and as dedicated members of the Vermont Coalition of Supervised Visitation and Safe Exchange Programs, we are "interested in assuring that children can have safe, conflict-free access to parents with whom they do not reside" we can, and should, be part of the solution to ending this violence.