Neutrality is intended to express respect for the potential importance of each parent to his or her child. This allows us to create and maintain a safe place for children, where contact with each parent involves as little conflict of loyalty as possible. Neutrality does NOT mean that we will accept or condone abusive behavior. Instead, it means that we are an independent agent, having no personal interest in the outcome of the case.
There are significant costs associated with supervised visitation and monitored exchanges and while it is the intention of the YWCA to provide affordable services to families, the visitation center is a fee based program. However, a sliding fee scale is available for all parents and is based on income. A parent must apply for use of the sliding fee scale by submitting one month’s pay stubs and information pertaining to all sources of income such as receipt of SSI/SSDI, child support, alimony, TANF, and if applicable the income of a spouse.
Most court orders indicate which parent is financially responsible for the fees for supervised visits or monitored exchanges. However, if the referring agency does not indicate who will be responsible for payment, the Center will assign financial responsibility to the non-residential parent.
A court order is not required to access services at the Center. However, both parents must agree to follow the policies and procedures at the Center. Although most families are referred to the Center by the Court, referrals may also be made by attorneys, Guardian Ad Litems, DCYF, Batterer's Intervention programs, crisis services, Probation/Parole, self-referrals, and other community resources.
If you have received a court order or other referral for supervised visitation or monitored exchanges at the Center, you must contact the Center at (603) 625-5785 to schedule an intake meeting. Each parent is required to participate in an intake meeting at the Center in order to review the Center’s policies and procedures, to review case concerns, and to answer questions regarding the services. Each party is responsible for a non-refundable intake fee of $30, regardless of which party is responsible for visitation costs.
Once accepted into the program, staff will schedule a separate time with the residential parent and child/ren in order to familiarize the child/ren with the Center by giving a tour and discussing what will happen during the visit or exchange. We make every attempt to answer the child/ren’s questions and try to help the child/ren feel comfortable at the Center.
The amount of time between referral and first visit will vary as the program is limited in the number of families that can be served at one time. Please note that an intake meeting does not guarantee acceptance into the program.
All individuals applying for services at the Center will be seen regardless of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, marital status, or ability to pay.
The YWCA is a private, non-profit organization and the Center is grant funded to provide services for families coping with domestic violence, stalking, and/or risks of abduction. The Center shall decline to accept a case when we cannot reasonably ensure the safety of all individuals. Some reasons for declining services include:
The Center does not limit the amount of time that a family may participate in services. However, the Center reserves the right to refuse, suspend, or terminate services at any time regardless if the supervised visit or monitored exchange is court ordered. Some reasons for refusal, suspension or termination of services include, but are not limited to:
The Center cannot guarantee the safety of an individual. However, we do make it the first priority when conducting a visit. Our safety mechanisms include:
All staff are required to participate in specialized training to supervise visits. The training prepares individuals to directly support children, residential and non-residential parents in a safe and positive family visit. The training is focused on understanding aspects of family violence, facilitating parent-child interaction, child development, the philosophy and history of visitation centers, the importance of safety, objective note taking, the impact of substance abuse on visitation, legal and ethical concerns, and how to work with children who have witnessed domestic violence.
Staff must be treated with respect at all times. Disrespectful behavior will not be tolerated by any participant.
It is not the purpose of the Center to observe the exchange or visit to make recommendations or to give opinions to the referring agency regarding present or future parenting time. The observations of parent-child interaction at the Center had occurred in a structured setting, and no prediction can be made about how contact between the same parent and child might occur in a less protected setting and without supervision.
Records of interactions between parents and staff are not kept confidentially at the Center, where these interactions do not value the same privilege of confidentiality as with attorneys or doctors. Likewise, the Center is not mandated by HIPAA. Whenever possible, the Center will otherwise make all reasonable efforts to keep records confidential, and will refuse to release information without the consent of the parent or receipt of a court order. Parents should be aware that records are created, maintained and are available as follows:
The Center is a mandatory reporter of suspected child abuse and neglect.
Click image below to view photos of the visiting rooms.