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5450 Strom Thurmond Blvd
Room 218
 Fort Jackson, SC 29207
 (803) 751-6325
FAX (803) 751-6356
 
Hours of Operation
0800-1630 Monday-Friday
 
 Located in the Strom Thurmond Building at the corner of
Marion Ave. and
Strom Thurmond Blvd.

 





Family Advocacy Program
Soldier And Family Readiness University
5953C Parker Lane

The Soldier & Family Readiness Program at Army Community Service provides a wide range of services that strengthen families and enhances relationships in support of soldiers and the mission.  The programs are as follows: Baby Care Workshops; Infant and Toddler Playgroup; free “Baby Bundles” for new parents who attend one of our parenting workshops; Parenting Classes; Stress/Anger Management Seminars; Domestic Violence Education; Victim Advocacy & Crisis Management Services; Home Visits; Support Groups; Resource library and referrals.

Activity Manager:  Annette McLeod
5450 Strom Thurmond Blvd, Room #218
Email: mcleoda@conus.army.mil
Phone # 803-751-6325
Fax # 803-751-6356

 


Links to Soldier & Family Readiness Services

Soldier and Family Readiness Team

Prevention & Education Classes

New Parent Support Program Links

Support Group Links

Victim Advocacy Program

Exceptional Family Member Program

Mandatory Training

Treatment and Counseling

Additional Services

Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Program

 

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Links to Prevention Education Classes

Educational and Training Courses

     

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    New Parent Support Program Links

    Pre-registration is required for all NPSP activities

    To register, telephone SAFR at 751-6325. 
    To receive a newsletter, telephone SAFR or send email request with your name, address, telephone number, age, and email address to: eloise.fombydenson@conus.army.mil

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    Support Group Links

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    Victim Advocacy Program Links

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    Soldier and Family Readiness Team

    Annette McLeod.............................................................................................751-6325 Soldier and Family Readiness Program Manager

    Lisa Deberry
    ...................................................................................................751-6325
    Program Coordinator

    Renee Morris
    .................................................................................................751-6316  Sexual Assault/Victim Advocate Coordinator

    LaTarsa Williams..........................................................................................751-6344 Victim Advocate Coordinator

    Lisa Magallanes
    Victim Advocate Coordinator........................................................................751-6335

    LaShanda Palmer

    Victim Advocate Coordinator........................................................................751-6303

    Cheryl Jackson..............................................................................................751-5256 Exceptional Family Member Program Manager

    T. Angela Pasley
    ............................................................................................751-6303
    Education and Training Program Manager

    Eloise Fomby-Denson..................................................................................751-6325
    New Parent Support Program Manager  
     

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    Prevention & Education Classes
     
    "Choices"
    Everyone in life must make choices. Learn to practice behaviors that produce positive results.  Learn how to identify and manage the emotion of anger.  This workshop is scheduled once a month at Moncrief Army Community Hospital from 1100-1200. For registration call 751-6303/6325.

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    "Stress Break "
    Stress Break is a workshop focusing on relaxation techniques, stress management, deep breathing and tension releasing methods. Bring your lunch and learn to stress down.  This workshop is scheduled once a month at Moncrief Hospital from 1200-1300. For registration call
    751-6303/6325.

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    Stress & Anger Management for Youth
    is a workshop for teens to talk about stressors and learn to manage emotions.  This workshop is scheduled once a month at SAFR University from 1700-1800. For registration call 751-6303/6325.

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    "The Stress Free Zone"
    The “Stress Free Zone” is not a class, but a time of relaxation to distress the mind and body. Come, close your eyes, and listen to the relaxing sounds of the beach.  For more information and to register,
    call 751-6325.

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    "Character Counts” 
    Classes are given at the Youth Services Center.  The classes provide activities and games to teach pre-teens positive communications, prevention skills and ways to increase self-esteem.  This class is held at the Youth Services Center, every Monday.  For more information call
    751-6303/6325.

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    Child Abuse Awareness Training Program
    Child Abuse Awareness Training is required training for youth program staff, child care provides, and other staff who work with children and youth.  The training provides information on understanding child abuse, neglect, reporting abuse, and provides support resources for child advocates.  This training is open to all individuals who are interested in supporting Child Abuse Prevention.  For more information and to register, call 751-6325.

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    Soldier & Family Readiness Overview
    AR 608-18 states this presentation is required annually for all soldiers.  It describes the prevention classes and programs that are available for soldiers and their families.  To schedule a class, call 751-6303/6325.

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    Educational Classes
    Classes available to Units/Command/other groups upon request:  Stress Management, Anger Management, Soldier and Family Readiness Program Overview, Child or Spouse Abuse Awareness Education, Identifying and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect and Teen Relationship classes.  To schedule a class, call 751-6303/6325.

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    Baby Basics / Dad's 101
    Baby Basics / Dad's 101 / Baby Bundle.  Meets 2d Tuesday of each month.
    This course is designed for parents-to-be.  Topics include: Shaken Baby Syndrome, sibling preparation, bathing, feeding, handling, diapering and dressing the infant, Dad’s 101, and SIDS.    A free beginning layette of baby products is given to each participant.  For free childcare, call CYS two weeks prior to workshop date.
     

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    Play Group
    Play Group is a place where parents meet informally and network with each other while learning about child development, appropriate practices, parenting skills and age appropriate activities for their children to include story time, group play, children songs and field trips.  “Play Group” meets each Monday:  1000 - 1100. 

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    Play Group Kinder Gym
    Meets  1st and 4th Fridays of each month, except June - August.
    This is a fun-filled program featuring games and activities for children under age five and provided the opportunity for a child to experience a wide range of physical activities.  Social, basic coordination and motor skills are enhanced  to prepare the child for “solo adventuring in the world of play.”

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    Parents Who Care

    1. Early Childhood ( Birth – 5 Years Old).  Meets the 1st Tuesday of each month. 0900 – 1500.
    2. Parenting Adolescents (6 – 12 Years old).  Meets the 1st Wednesday of each month, 1000 – 1600.
    3. Parenting Teens (13 – 18 Years old).  Meets the 3d Wednesday of each month, 1000 – 1600.
    These monthly workshops focus on being effective parents and tips on effectively managing children from infancy to teenagers.  Each parent will  receive a certificate of training; soldiers receive two promotion points after course completion; and a free parenting manual.  The parenting manual must be picked up from SAFR, Strom Thurmond Blvd, Room 218,  prior to attending class.   Free childcare is available by calling CYS two weeks prior to the workshop date.

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    Great Expectations 
    (A 6-week class or 1 day class).   This is a Lamaze class for expectant parents because childbirth is a great leap into the unknown. It is difficult to imagine and must be actually experienced. These childbirth classes are opportunities to focus on the impending experience through video and hands-on presentations.  Concepts taught include relaxation, what to expect and how to cope, and at the very least, learn a few breathing and relaxation exercises and coaching techniques. 

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    Breast Feeding Support Group
    Meets the 3rd Tuesday of each month, 1000 – 1130

    Group is open to all expectant parents and nursing moms of infants and toddlers.  Participants will receive information and meet with other parents and parents-to-be who are interested in breastfeeding. 

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    Flamingo Support Group for Women
    Group meets the 3d Thursday of each month, 1130 – 1300

    This women support group is about change.  Participants learn the Fear + Action = Courage and we have to choose our own life and follow our own paths.  What is good for you is not good me me.  I am accountable for me.  The path is gone forever.

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    Maternity Ward Visit
    Visitation to the maternity ward at delivery hospital by expectant parents is available by telephoning the hospital directly to schedule an appointment.  

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    Juvenile Diversion Program 
    This program is a 12 to 16 week program created to address youth issues such as lying, stealing, being disrespectful, self management, conflict resolution and decision-making, delinquency, the law, family interaction, and help modify youth behavior, enhance academic performance and strengthen overall  family functioning.  Youth and parents meet twice a month for group sessions.   Program is in the development phase for September 2007 implementation.

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    Teen Relationships: “Caring, Commitment & Change.”
    Parental release required. 

    Parental release is required.  These workshops teaches teens and adolescents about  approaches to the big screen of adolescents’ lives.  Subjects discussed are:   Falling in love; relationship expectations, commitment to change, intimacy, STDs, pregnancy, conflict resolution, decision making, and why relationships end sometimes.  Also utilized are dolls for classroom discussions about parenting and infant care.    Teen informational  web site link:  • Teen Challenges    • Parenting Challenges  Quarterly newsletter is available.

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    “Moving On”- Families in Transition (Adults)  
    This seminar is designed to assist parents understand the needs of their children during family transitions resulting from separation, divorce, deployment, remarriage, and death. The primary focus is to strengthen the family unit by discussing feelings of loss, communicating with absent spouse/former spouse, and letting go. A quarterly newsletter is available.  

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    Children Dealing With Family Separation
    (Adolescents) Parental release required.  

    This workshop teaches children how to cope with their sadness, feelings of abandonment, anger/rage/violent behaviors, impulsivity, acting out, defiance, and limit-testing behavior.   Quarterly newsletter is available.

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    Single Family Connection
    The “Single Family Connection” is a support group for single parents that provides ideas, parenting strategies and resource information to strengthen the home environment.  Quarterly newsletter available.

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    Blended / Step Families Support Group 
    Nearly two out of three re-marriages come with children fail.  This workshop provides
    ideas for blended families to navigate their way through step-family life.  Quarterly newsletter is available.

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    Youth Readiness Support Group
    Youth Readiness Support Group is a forum where teens can talk about stressors and concerns.  Speakers and videos for topics that relate to teen issues are used periodically.  This group is open to teens, ages 15-17.  Youth Readiness Support Group meets monthly.   For more information call 751-6325.

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    EFMP Parent Support Group
    The Army Community Service EFMP Parent Support Group meets the 4th Tuesday of each month, 6-8 pm, at the Army Family community Service (ACS) Office.  This is a great place to meet other parents in similar situations and talk about issues that concerns us all.  Guest speakers are arranged periodically for topics of interest. For more information and to register, call 751-5256.

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    Respite Care for EFMP Family Members
    EFMP provides respite care for family members with special needs who are enrolled in the Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP), who meet specific medical criteria.  The qualifying exceptional family member is eligible to receive a maximum of 40 hours of care monthly.  Contact the Installation EFMP Manager for more information.   

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    Step by Step: 
    Walking to Decrease Stress

    “Step by Step is a stress management and walking support group.  The goal of this support group is to increase the understanding of stress and the role it plays in your health and wellness.  The class promotes walking, the simplest method of exercise.  Individuals will identify the stressors in their life and learn how to manage them.  Members will develop an individual walking plan and log in weekly success.  For information on time and location, Call 751-6303.

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    Sexual Assault Program
    The Army Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Program reinforces the Army's commitment to eliminate incidents of sexual assault through a comprehensive policy that focuses on education, prevention, integrated victim support, rapid reporting, thorough investigation, appropriate action, and follow-up. Army policy promotes sensitive care for victims of sexual assault and accountability for those who commit these crimes.  For more information, call 751-6325.

     

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    What Is Sexual Assault?

    Sexual Assault is a crime. Sexual assault is defined as intentional sexual contact, characterized by use of force, physical threat or abuse of authority or when the victim does not or cannot consent. Sexual assault includes rape, nonconsensual sodomy (oral or anal sex), indecent assault (unwanted, inappropriate sexual contact or fondling), or attempts to commit these acts. Sexual assault can occur without regard to gender or spousal relationship or age of victim.
    "Consent" shall not be deemed or construed to mean the failure by the victim to offer physical resistance. Consent is not given when a person uses force, threat of force, coercion or when the victim is asleep, incapacitated, or unconscious.
    Other sex-related offenses are defined as all other sexual acts or acts in violation of the Uniform Code of Military Justice that do not meet the above definition of sexual assault, or the definition of sexual harassment as promulgated in DoD Directive 1350.2, Department of Defense Military Equal Opportunity. Examples of other sex-related offenses could include indecent acts with another and adultery.
    For the specific articles of sexual assault offenses under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ), see the Manual for
    Courts-Martial (MCM)..

    Reporting Options
    Under DoD’s Confidentiality Policy, sexual assault victims are offered two reporting options :
    Restricted Report
    This option is recommended for victims of sexual assault who wish to confidentially disclose the crime to specifically identified individuals and receive medical treatment and counseling without triggering the official investigative process. Service members who are sexually assaulted and desire restricted reporting under this policy must report the assault to a Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC), Victim Advocate (VA), a healthcare provider or chaplain. This policy on restricted reporting is in addition to the current protections afforded privileged communications with a chaplain, and does not alter or affect those protections. (If disclosure is made to anyone other than those covered may trigger investigation of the allegations by law enforcement).  There are exceptions to this policy; for more information call 751-6325.
    Unrestricted Report
    This option is recommended for victims of sexual assault who desire medical treatment, counseling and an official investigation of the crime. When selecting unrestricted reporting, you should use current reporting channels, e.g. chain of command, law enforcement or report the incident to the Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC), or request healthcare providers to notify law enforcement. Upon notification of a reported sexual assault, the SARC will immediately assign a Victim Advocate (VA).
     ADVOCACY
    Sexual Assault Response Coordinator
    The SARC is an individual who serves as the designated program coordinator of victim support services to coordinate and oversee the local implementation and execution of the Army in Europe Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Program. SARCs are embedded in Army Community Service and works for the FAPM . The SARC should be contacted immediately when an incident of sexual assault occurs. The SARC will explain the VA services available to the victim and assign a VA (either an IVA or UVA) if desired by the victim.
    Installation Victim Advocate
    Installation victim advocates work directly with the installation SARC, victims of sexual assault, unit victim advocates, and other installation response agencies. The Victim Advocate provides support to the victim throughout the medical, investigative, and judicial process.  If you need information to break the cycle of abuse in your family,
    call 751-6316/6325.
    Unit Victim Advocates
    UVA’s are trained to perform collateral duties in support of victims of sexual assault particularly in deployed environments.

    What To Do If You Have Been Assaulted
    Get away from your attacker and get to a safe place.
    DO NOT wash, comb, or clean any part of your body.
    DO NOT change your clothes, if possible.
    DO NOT touch or move anything at the scene; it is a crime scene.
    Go to the nearest emergency room for medical treatment. You or the hospital staff can call the police or a victim advocate.
    Call a friend or family member you trust.
    Call a crisis center or hotline to talk with a counselor: National Domestic Violence Hotline 1-800-799-SAFE or National Sexual Assault Hotline 1-888-656-HOPE
    Call the Installation Victim Advocate or the Sexual Assault Response Coordinator @ 803-429-4870.
    Who To Contact If You Need Help
    Sexual Assault Response Coordinator
    Fort Jackson office
    5450 Strom Thurmond Blvd
    Room 218
    ........................................................................................................751-6316

    Victim Advocate Coordinator..............................................................751-6325/6316
    after hours cell .......................................................................................803-429-4870
    Chaplains Family Life Center......................................................................751-4542
    Military Police...........................................................................................751-3113/911
    Sexual Trauma Services..................................................................(803) 252-8393
    24-hour Crisis Hotline.....................................................................1-800-491-RAPE
    Social Work Services Counseling,
    7th Floor Moncrief Army Community Hospital...........................................751-2216                                                                                                                        or 751-2169

    Staff Judge Advocate
    ...................................................................................754-4287
    Sister Care (24-hour Crisis Hotline).........................................1-800-637-7606 or
                                                                                                                       803-765-9428
    Military One Source..........................................................................1-800-464-8107
    Community Mental Health...........................................................................751-5183
    Alcohol/Drug Program.......................................................................751-6597/5007
    Army Community Services.........................................................................751-5256
    Criminal Investigation Division...................................................................751-7664
    Military One Source serves American troops and their families. This service is designed to help you deal with life's issues. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 365 days a year you can call in and speak to a master's level consultant or you can go online to access information or email a consultant.

    • Caring for you and your family.
    • Managing your everyday life.
    • Available anytime, anywhere.
    • Your privacy is assured.
    • No cost to you.
    • From US: 1-800-464-8107

    International toll free: 800-464-81077 (dial all 11 numbers)
    International collect: 484-530-5889
    http://www.militaryonesource.com
    Department of the Army Sexual Assault Web site: www.sexualassault.army.mil

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    Victim Advocacy Program
    The Victim Advocate helps empower victims of spouse abuse to make decisions that can improve their quality of life.  They provide victims with information on their rights, provide emergency shelter, establish safety plans, file for protective orders, assist with child care costs, and accompany victims to court proceedings and/or meetings with lawyers, police, and command.  They also make referrals to local resources for a variety of needs.  If you need information to break the cycle of abuse in your family, call 751-6316/6325.

    Domestic Violence Reporting Policy
    Adult victims of domestic abuse have two reporting options: unrestricted reporting and restricted reporting.

    Unrestricted Reporting
    Victims of domestic abuse who want to pursue an official investigation of an incident should use current reporting channels, e.g., chain of command, Family Advocacy Program (FAP), or law enforcement.  Upon notification of a reported domestic abuse incident, victim advocacy services and FAP clinical services will be offered to the victim.

    Restricted Reporting
    Restricted reporting allows an adult victim of domestic abuse to disclose the details of his or her abuse to specifically identified individuals and receive medical treatment and victim advocacy services without requiring that notice be provided to the victim’s  or alleged offender’s commander or law enforcement.  Victims who desire restricted reporting must report to one of the following specified individuals:

        • Victim Advocate
        • Victim Advocate Supervisor
        • Healthcare provider

     

    Disclosure of domestic abuse to persons other than those covered by this policy may result in an investigation of the allegations by law enforcement and clinical intervention from FAP.  There are exceptions to this policy; for more information call 751-6325.

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    Victim Advocate Program Services
    The Victim Advocate Program is a comprehensive program to provide support, information and advocacy services to victims of emotional and/or physical abuse by their intimate partners.

    • EMERGENCY SHELTER             
      Will find confidential, temporary placement for adults and children seeking to leave their home.

    • RESPITE CHILD CARE                
      Will assist in temporary payment for enrollment fees and full- or part-time care at the Fort Jackson CDC’s.

    • PROTECTIVE ORDERS              
      Will assist in completion of paperwork and provide court accompaniment to those who are seeking legal restraining orders against their partners.  Will assist in obtaining military orders of no-contact.

    • ADVOCACY                                
      Will act as your advocate in voicing concerns to Command, Housing, Military Police, Staff Judge Advocate Office or to any agency in which you may be seeking assistance.

    • INFORMATION                           
      Will tell you about the rights and services you may be entitled to as a victim of abuse.  Will discuss impact, if applicable, on military career and military benefits. 

    • REFERRALS                             
      Will direct you to appropriate resources for your counseling, legal, financial and other needs. 

    • SAFETY PLANNING & SUPPORT
      Will develop a plan to help keep you safe.  Will provide emotional support and crisis planning.

    •  TRAINING                                 
      Will provide training to both community groups and military units about domestic violence. It does not get better on its own.

    • You have a right to be safe in your relationship!
    • You do not deserve to be abused!
    • There is help available!


              Are you at risk for abuse?

    • Does the person you love do any of the following…
    • Keep track of your time or activities?
    • Constantly accuse you of being unfaithful?
    • Discourage your relationships with family & friends?
    • Criticize you for little things?
    • Easily lose their temper?
    • Control all the finances?
    • Call you names to degrade or humiliate you?
    • Destroy personal property or sentimental items?
    • Make you afraid or fearful?
    • Threaten to hurt you or the children?
    • Hurt you and then apologize?
    • Shove, push, slap or restrain you?
    • Hit, punch or kick you?
    • Force you to engage in unwanted sex?


              Don’t ignore the problem! Call for help!

    • Contact the military police if you feel scared, threatened or if you have been injured.
    • Get immediate medical attention for injuries
    • Document injuries w/ photographs
    • Contact the Victim Advocate Program for information, support and referral.


              Safety Planning Guide

    • Have extra car keys hidden in case you need to leave
    • Keep extra changes of clothes ready for you and your children
    • Keep extra change for telephone calls/phone card/keep a cell phone charged
    • Determine who can lend you money or let you stay
      with them temporarily
    • Identify a neighbor you can tell about the abuse and ask that they call police if they hear a disturbance in your home
    • Teach a code word to your children to let them know to
      call for help
    • Make copies of all your important papers for yourself and
      your children.
    • If an argument seems unavoidable, stay away from the bathroom, kitchen or any room where weapons are accessible.
    • Be smart! Do not engage in any provocative behavior or violence unless it is clearly self-defense.
    • If you obtain a protective order, keep copies with you at all times. Keep copies in your car, at your workplace, your child’s school and any other place you may encounter your abuser.
    • Keep talking to people who support you.


              If you leave, take with you…

    • Drivers license             
    • Protective Order                      
    • Insurance Card            
    • Address Book                         
    • Phone card                              
    • Change of Clothing                  
    • Divorce/custody/immigration papers
    • Jewelry/Objects you can sell
    • House/Car keys
    • ID Cards
    • Money/Change
    • Medications
    • Checkbook
    • Small toys

    Back to Victim Advocacy Links

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    Explaining Military Spouse Abuse Program
    Each branch of military service has a Family Advocacy Program to assist when a report of spousal violence in a military family occurs.

    1. What does the Family Advocacy Program (FAP) do?

    • Is the Report Point of Contact (RPOC) to identify and report spouse abuse cases
    • Provides practical assistance to victims of abuse to include emergency shelter, safety planning, child care, food/clothing, protective orders, financial help and referrals to legal assistance.
    • Provides expert counseling for short and long term treatment to all family members including the victim, the abuser and children in the home.
    • Partners with Command to ensure victim safety, support and communicate the treatment progress of the family
    • Conducts educational classes to military units and family groups about spouse abuse

       2.    Who is eligible to receive services?

    • Any active duty military family, no matter what branch of service
    • Retirees
    • Activated Reserve and National Guard families

        3.   If I report abuse, won’t my career be ruined?

    The responsibility of punishment for spousal abuse lies with each individual Command, not the Family Advocacy Program. However, some guidelines are:

    • If you are an active duty soldier reporting abuse by a family member or active duty spouse, there is no career harm in reporting that you are a victim. As a victim, you are not at fault for the violence.

    • If you are a family member or soldier reporting abuse by your active duty spouse, each complaint will be evaluated by Command to determine if disciplinary measures will be taken against the offending soldier. Discipline often depends upon the severity and frequency of the abuse. The majority of abuse reports are mild to moderate, and in many cases, successful completion of counseling and a halt to the violent conduct is all that is required of the soldier.

    • If the soldier continues to abuse while enrolled in or after completion of counseling, or if the soldier violates no-contact orders, Command, with advisement by the Staff Judge Advocate, can and should exercise its disciplinary options.  

    • Severe complaints of abuse involving weapons, serious injury or threats to life may warrant immediate and serious disciplinary measures.  

    • Remember that violence against a spouse is a CRIME. Do not put career above safety. The Army provides financial assistance to family members whose active duty spouse must leave military service due to abuse offenses.  (Transitional Compensation, AR 608-1) 

        4.   Who must report spouse abuse?

    • Victims and offenders are URGED to self-report abuse to FAP or law enforcement
    • MANDATORY reporters include: Commanders, Senior NCO’s, physicians, nurses, social workers, other medical personnel, school personnel and law enforcement officers.
    • All soldiers and members of the military community are ENCOURAGED to make reports of spouse abuse to the RPOC.


         5.  What types of behaviors should I report?

    Some warning signs of relationship violence can be:

    • Your spouse denies you access to friends, family, employment, transportation and finances resulting in isolation and hopelessness
    • Your spouse calls you degrading and humiliating names in public or private
    • Your spouse puts their hands on you in any way to control, intimidate or harm you
    • Your spouse threatens to harm themselves, you, or the children if you leave
    • Your mental health is suffering under the control of your spouse
    • Your spouse throws things, punches walls, or points weapons at you
    • Your spouse is unreasonably jealous of your activities and always accuses you of infidelity

    FYI!  There are many signs of unhealthy relationships. Report all to FAP. Many complaints will not arise to the level of a FAP case. Social Work Services (SWS) can still offer individual or marriage counseling to these persons.

        6.   What types of treatment does FAP offer?

    • Individual Counseling
    • Marriage/Couples Counseling
    • Anger Management
    • Batterers Treatment
    • Support groups


        7.   Does Command have to be involved?

    • Yes. The Family Advocacy Program is a Command directed program. A cooperative partnership ensures the best outcome for the family. Both Command and FAP work to preserve family confidentiality so that only the most necessary personnel are involved in the details of the case. FAP recognizes that family violence is a sensitive and highly personal matter.

         8.  Other programs that may collaborate with FAP are:

    • Substance Abuse Rehabilitation Department (SARD)

    • Community Mental Health (CMH)

    •  Chaplaincy

    •  Law Enforcement

    •  Staff Judge Advocate (SJA)

    •  Soldier & Family Readiness and Army Community Services

        9.   What is the Case Review Committee?

    • The CRC is an administrative team that reviews all complaints of family violence within 30 days. It serves a dual purpose:

    1.   To determine if a treatment plan is necessary for the family and outline that plan with Command;

    2.   To administratively recognize, or “substantiate” that an event of spousal violence occurred and to assign responsibility to the offending party.  This is not a “conviction” or a court of law. It is an administrative function to develop a treatment plan for a family. Not all cases are “substantiated”.  Almost half of cases are deemed “unsubstantiated” or “unresolved”.

    You will be notified of the CRC decision outcome.

        10. What is the Army Central Registry (ACR)?

    • If the case is “substantiated” by the CRC team, the case name is submitted into a confidential database where it will remain for 25 years.  In the event that a subsequent report of violence occurs at a new duty location, the FAP and Command at that location can review the previous incident and the treatment outcome.

    FYI! Listing in the ACR can result in an offending soldier being unable to progress into a Recruiting or Drill Sergeant position, as these are high-stress positions that often have a negative effect on a family.

    11.     What happens when I make a report? There are several steps in the process:

    •  If the report is made through law enforcement during an emergency, they will investigate the case and notify FAP.

    •  If the report is made directly to FAP, law enforcement may or may not be notified based on the circumstances of the report. Command must be notified by FAP within 24 hours.

    •  Many reports are made to FAP directly by Commanders who are mandatory reporters.

    •  After a report is made, installation policy dictates that a “cooling off” period, or period of “no-contact” is implemented. On Ft. Jackson, this period is 72 hours.  The soldier is often temporarily removed from the home to stay in the barracks, in an emergency protective shelter or other suitable location.

    • In this period of “no-contact”, the parties involved are asked to report to FAP individually for an assessment of the complaint and relationship history. They are assigned a FAP case manager.

    • If safe, the parties can cohabitate again after the 72-hour period. If not safe, the no-contact order can be extended by Command.

    • The victim can seek additional protections by applying for a civilian Order of Protection, initiating other legal proceedings, and accessing other helpful resources.

    •  The parties may continue to engage in counseling services with FAP

    • Within 30 days, the case is reviewed by the CRC and an ongoing treatment plan may be established and implemented.

    •  Follow-up by Command and FAP with the family will take place during the next year.

    • Disciplinary measures, if any, as deemed necessary by Command/SJA for the offense.

    FYI! A treatment programs success depends upon willingness to hold oneself responsible for behavior and to set goals. There is no instant “cure”. The process can be long-term.  Persons unwilling to give a relationship the time and hard work needed to make it healthy and safe will not progress in treatment and may abuse again.

    What if I am too afraid to report: No one will believe me, or my spouse may retaliate against me?

    FAP encourages early reporting at the first signs of abuse.  However, many victims believe that their spouses will do them further harm if they come forward. This is a common fear and concern.  Know that your relationship will not improve on its own without intervention. Until you are ready, use the following tips:

    1-Document all behavior. Take pictures of injuries and date them. Keep a diary with dates and descriptions of injuries, threats and incidents. Keep in a safe place.

    2- Talk to someone who supports you: A trusted friend, a coworker or a family member. Talk to a staff member of a domestic violence hotline or victim advocate.

    3-Educate yourself about spousal abuse. Develop a personal safety plan. Know your community resources.

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    Explaining Orders of Protection and
    Restraining Orders
    If you are being abused, harassed or stalked by a former or current intimate partner, you may apply for a protective order that provides you with legal protections to keep your offender away.   

              Who is eligible for an Order of Protection?

    • Spouses
    • Former spouses
    • Persons who have a child in common
    • Persons who are or who have formerly cohabitated as intimate partners

              What can an Order of Protection do?

    • Legally restrain the offending party from further abuse and harassment
    • Award sole possession of a shared residence
    • Award custody of children you share in common
    • Award spousal and/or child support
    • Set a visitation schedule with the children
    • Other reasonable relief as requested

              How long will an Order of Protection last?

    • They are temporary. They will expire after a minimum of 6 months to a maximum of 1 year
    • Prior to expiration, you can ask the court for an extension

              What happens if my order is violated?

    • Contact law enforcement immediately to report the violation, even if your offender has fled the area. Obtain a copy of a written police report for documentation.
    • There can be dual penalties:
    • If arrested by law enforcement, the criminal penalty for violation is 30 days in jail and/or a $500 fine and/or a perpetrator treatment program
    • If held in contempt of court, the civil penalty for violation is 1 year in jail and/or a $1000 fine

              How do I get an Order of Protection?

              You must complete an application at the Family Court Clerk of              Court’s Office in the county:

    • In which the abuse occurred
    • Where you are currently sheltered
    • Where the offender lives

              For forms and assistance, contact:

    • Family Court Clerk of Court Office
    • The Fort Jackson Victim Advocate
    • Sister care battered women’s services

              Does it cost anything to file for an Order of Protection?

    • Filing is free
    • You do not need an attorney

              How soon can I get an Order of Protection?

    • A hearing may be held within 15 days of the date of application
    • In emergencies, a judge may grant a hearing within 24 hours

    FYI: The abuser must be given personal notice (via subpoena) by the Court to appear, otherwise no hearing can be held. An abuser with no known location will be difficult to serve with notice.  It may cost a fee to serve an out-of-state abuser with notice to appear. Predict and prepare for potential escalated violence after the abuser is served with a subpoena. The hearing can still be held if the abuser is served and then chooses not to appear.

    Protective Orders are only as good as the victim who is willing to enforce them. You must call the police and report violations. Not holding an offender accountable for violations only empowers them to do further harm.

    Protective Orders will not ensure your safety if an offender does not care about the consequences of their actions and is intent on being violent and abusive. Even though you may have a protective order, do not forget your safety plan!  

              What information do I need to fill out an application and bring to the hearing?

    • Information about the abuser: contact information, description, employer, social security number, and vehicle make/model
    • Financial information about the abuser and your personal finances
    • Notarized affidavits/statements from witnesses or others who are aware of the abuse that has occurred
    • Photographs of injuries
    • Police reports
    • Medical records of injury
    • Facts of the incident: dates, times, injuries received, outcome. 
    • Do not bring minor children to the hearing to testify

              What should I do with the Order if it is granted?

              Keep copies (does not have to be an original) at:

    • Local police station
    • Child’s school/daycare
    • Purse/wallet
    • Vehicle
    • Place of employment
    • Neighbor’s/Relative’s home
    • Keep a copy with you at all times!

              Is my order still enforceable if I move/travel?

    Yes. Your order is granted “full faith and credit” and is enforceable in all 50 states and on military installations.

     

              What if I let my abuser move back in?

    • Your order is still valid and your abuser can be arrested for violating that order.
    • You are not in violation of the order for re-cohabitating with your abuser. However, your case is weakened that you would need protection from the offender.

    If you wish to discontinue your protective order, contact the issuing Family Court to sign a waiver.

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    Restraining Orders
    Restraining Orders are very similar to Orders of Protection. However, the sole relief an RO grants is restraint of the offending party. These are generally issued to boy-girlfriends, strangers, acquaintances who do not cohabitate or have children with their offender. RO’s are granted to persons who:

    • Are victims of a pattern of harassment and stalking
    • A “pattern” is 2 or more incidents within a 90 day period

              Where do I file?
              File with the Magistrate Court Judge:

    • Where the harassment/stalking occurred
    • Where the offender resides
    • Where the victim resides if the offender is a nonresident of the state

              Other information:

    • No filing fee
    • 30 day/$500 fine criminal penalty
    • 24-hour emergency or a 15 day hearing
    • See Order of Protection information

              Examples of violations:

    • Unwanted telephone contact
    • Following the victim
    • Threats to harm/Physical assault
    • Property damage
    • Sending letters or gifts
    • Appearing at victims home, school or workplace

    Keep a harassment and stalking diary to record dates, times and facts of the unwanted contact. Record telephone calls or messages. Keep letters or gifts. Report violations; keep written police reports. 

    Persons subject to an Order of Protection or Restraining Order issued for harassment and stalking can not own or possess firearms under Federal Law 18 USC 922 (g) (8)

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    Explaining Army Transitional Compensation Benefits

    What is Transitional Compensation?
    Congress established the Transitional Compensation Program in 1994 as part of the fiscal Department of Defense Authorization Act (PL 103-160).  It was created specifically to encourage victimized spouses and children to report abuse by their active duty sponsor without fear of economic reprisal.
    This program authorizes temporary financial support and other benefits for victimized families for which the soldier is to be separated from active duty under a court martial or administrative discharge. 
            
             Who is eligible?
             The Army Transitional Compensation Program financially assists children and adult spouses who:

    •  Are victims of reported family violence from an active duty sponsor; and,
    • The active duty sponsor is to be/has been separated from the armed services in whole or in part for committing acts of family violence against their spouse and/or children.

              What benefits are offered?

    • Adult spouses receive $1,033 per month
    • Children receive $257 per month 
    • Children not living with recipient parent receive $410 per month
    • Retain military ID card for accessing installation privileges and resources
    • (Commissary and Exchange benefits)
    • Retain TRICARE benefits
    • Minimum 12-month duration to a maximum of 36-month duration
    • Payments must be reported as income, but they are not taxable
    • Payments do not prohibit additional civil collection of funds from the abuser such as child or spousal support payments.

              What conditions must be met?

    • Recipients must no longer cohabitate with their abuser (divorce is optional; you just cannot live together)
    • Recipients lose benefits upon date of a remarriage
    • Spousal recipient was not found to have aided or abetted abuse of a child.

              How to apply for Transitional Compensation:

    • Submit a completed DD Form 2698 “Application for Transitional Compensation”.
    • The applicant will complete Section I and item 23 of Section II. Sign and date item 12, Section I.
    • The applicant will submit a Standard Form 1199A “Direct Deposit Sign Up Form” or a voided check/deposit slip with a signed request for direct deposit
    • Submit application to the Family Advocacy Program

    Request forms and assistance by contacting the installation Family Advocacy Program or Staff Judge Advocate Office Victim/Witness Liaison (803) 751-6316 or 751-6811
    For Commanders:
    The decision to administratively separate or court-martial a soldier for family violence offenses is never easy. Knowing that the family of the soldier will be financially cared for can lighten the burden of decision.  
    There may be more reasons why the soldier is to be separated than family violence alone.  As long as family violence is listed in the chapter/court martial paperwork as one of those reasons, the family will be eligible for the Transitional Compensation Program.

              Circumstances to consider for separation:
            The incident of violence was severe (threats to life; physical injuries;
            strangulation cases)

    • Incidents of violence have been repeated; recidivism within 1 year of prior incident
    • The incident of violence has arisen to criminal charges
    • The soldier was convicted by a civilian court of a qualifying misdemeanor of domestic violence and has triggered federal Lautenburg (gun) Amendment consequences
    • The soldier has been deemed a “Treatment Failure/Failure to Progress” by the Family Advocacy Program case-manager

              Always seek counsel from the Staff Judge Advocate Office 
           Other information:

    • Prepare to wait. There will be a lapse of time between the separation/court martial and the award and payment of benefits. The recipient is responsible for any health care or financial needs during that time.
    • A new ID card must be issued to the recipient. Bring letter of award to the ID card section of any military installation. If the ID Card section has questions, they should contact The Army Project Office at (703) 325-4525 or DSN 221-4525 
    Army Point of Contact:                                                                           
    U.S. Army Community & Family Support Center          
    4700 King Street                                        
    Alexandra, VA 22303
    (703) 681-7396/7387/7396/7392


     
           

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     Helpful Phone Numbers

    Fort Jackson Victim Advocate Program............................(803) 751-6316/6325

    Ft. Jackson Military Police.......................................................911, 751-3113/3115

    Ft. Jackson Staff Judge Advocate
    Legal Assistance
    ................................................................................(803) 751-4287

    Social Work Services Relationship/
    Family Counseling
    ..............................................................................(803) 751-2216,
                                                                                                           7th Fl, Moncrief Hosp

    Army Community Services                    
    Emergency financial relief, financial
    counseling/planning and a lending closet
    ....................................(803) 751-5256

    Parenting/Baby Care classes /
    New Parent Support/Toddler Playgroup
    .......................................(803) 751-6325

    Sister Care battered women services....................................1-800-637-7606 or
                                                                                                                    (803) 765-9428 

    Family Court Clerk of Court Richland Co.......................................(803) 576-3320

    Lexington Co........................................................................................(803) 359-8212

    Legal Aid Telephone Intake Service...............................................(888) 346-5592

    SC Centers for Equal Justice......................................................(888) 799-9668 or
                                                                                                                    (803) 799-9430 

    SC Bar Association Ask-A-Lawyer.................................................(888) 321-3644
                                                                                                                  M-TH 1300-1700                                                                                                                   FRI 0900-1200

    Magistrate Office/Ft. Jackson Jurisdiction.................................(803) 576-2500/
                                                                                                                               576-2300

    DSS Child Support Enforcement.....................................................(800) 768-5858

    Substance Abuse
    Rehabilitation Department
    .....................................................(803) 751-6597/5007

    Moncrief Army Community Hospital................................(803) 751-2273 (CARE)                                                                                                                        or 751-2169

    Army Family Team Building..............................................................(803) 751-6315

     

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    Lautenberg Amendment Information

    What every soldier needs to know about guns and
    domestic violence.
    You have probably heard that if you are convicted of a domestic violence offense, then you can no longer own a gun.  Every soldier needs to understand the laws regarding domestic violence and gun ownership and how a qualifying conviction can affect your military career.  Here
    are the facts.

    In 1994 and 1996, Congress passed changes to the 1968 Gun Control Act making it a crime for those convicted of a qualifying misdemeanor crime of domestic violence to possess firearms and ammunition.  This is often referred to as the Lautenberg Amendment.  So what is a qualifying misdemeanor? 

    According to United States Code, Title 18, Section 921, a qualifying misdemeanor crime of domestic violence is an offense that is a misdemeanor under Federal or State law; and has, as an element, the use or attempted use of physical force, or the threatened use of a deadly weapon.  This offense must have been committed against the victim by a current or former spouse, parent or guardian of the victim, by a person with whom the victim shares a child in common, or by a person who is cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse, parent, or guardian, or by a person similarly situated to a spouse, parent, or guardian of the victim.

    Under this definition, many state crimes may qualify even though they are not called  “domestic violence”.  Many offenders convicted of “assault”, “assault & battery” or “simple assault” prior to the law codifying the unique term “criminal domestic violence” fall under this definition, if the assault has the elements listed above.  Even though this amendment was put into effect in 1996, it is retroactive, which means if you were convicted of a qualifying offense in the past, you are still subject to the requirements of this law.

    18 USC 922 clearly states that it is unlawful for any person who has been convicted in any court of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence, to ship, transport, or possess any firearm or ammunition; or to receive any firearm or ammunition.  The Gun Control Act goes into great length to define “firearm” and “ammunition”.  However the basic definition that applies to a “firearm” is any weapon (including a starter gun) which will or is designed to or may readily be converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive.  This includes the frame or receiver of any such weapon, any firearm muffler or firearm silencer, or any destructive device such as any exploding incendiary, poisoning gas bomb, grenade, missile, mine or similar device.  “Ammunition” is defined by cartridge cases, primers, bullets, or propellant powder designed for use in any firearm.

    In addition, possession of a gun or firearm is unlawful while a person is subject to a qualifying court protective order.  A court protective order qualifies if it was issued after a hearing to which the person received notice and had an opportunity to participate in, and the order restrains such person from harassing, stalking or threatening an intimate partner, or engaging in behavior that would place an intimate partner in reasonable fear of bodily injury.  The length of time a protective order can be in effect can range from days to a lifetime.  Protective orders in South Carolina are issued for not less than six months, but not more than one year.

    There is a limited exception in the law for military personnel subject to protective restraining orders that permit soldiers to use weapons during the performance of military duties.  However, many Commanders would still use caution and prohibit such persons from carrying firearms, except in supervised situations.  For example, a commander may allow the soldier to qualify with a weapon, but order the same soldier not to carry weapons in the routine course of his duties.  However, soldiers may not possess or use firearms at any time when not related to official military duties if they are subject to a protective order.

    What are the penalties for a service member if he is convicted of a domestic violence offense?  First, imposition of non-judicial punishment, such as an Article 15, or a summary court-martial conviction does not qualify as a conviction of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence.  The only convictions recognized are those from a general or special court-martial.  A soldier who finds himself with a qualifying conviction from any civilian state court needs to seek legal assistance immediately.  Soldiers with qualifying convictions are non-deployable for missions that require firearms and ammunition, and are normally reassigned to non-tactical units.  They are denied appointments to leadership positions that by nature would give them access to weapons and ammunition and are not authorized to attend service schools with weapons instruction.  In addition, soldiers are not allowed to re-enlist, but may be allowed to extend for one year to prepare for transition out of the military.

    The penalty for firearm possession after a person has been convicted of a qualifying misdemeanor of domestic violence or subject to a court protective order, is a felony that can carry a two-year prison sentence, a $25,000.00 fine, or both. 

    Although only a few soldiers in the military may be affected by the Lautenberg Amendment, it is important for all service members to understand the collateral consequences of a domestic violence conviction.  For more information, please contact the Staff Judge Advocates Office at (803) 751-4287 or the Family Advocacy Program at (803) 751-6325 [DSN 734].

    Back to Victim Advocacy Links

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    Exceptional Family Member Program
    This mandated enrollment Army program works with military and civilian agencies to provide comprehensive and coordinated medical, educational, housing, community support and personnel services to families with special needs.  An exceptional family member is a family member, regardless of age, with any physical, emotional, developmental or intellectual disorder that requires special treatment, therapy, education, training or counseling. 

    EFMP also has a Care Notebook available for members.  It’s used for tracking family member’s medical, school and daycare services.  The Care Notebook can be designed specifically for each individual needs. 

    EFMP has a library available to Soldiers and family members to borrow books and VCR tapes on educational, medical information and services.  Call 751-5256 for more information.

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    Educational Classes
    Classes that are available to Units/Command/other groups upon request:  Stress Management, Anger Management, Soldier and Family Readiness Program Overview, Child or Spouse Abuse Awareness Education, Identifying and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect, and Teen
    prevention classes.

     Mandatory Training

    Soldier & Family Readiness Overview
    This presentation is required annually for all soldiers.  It describes the prevention classes and programs that are available for soldiers and their families. For more information and to register, call 751-6325.

    Domestic Violence Awareness Overview
    This is an annual presentation for all soldiers and community members. I cover intimate partner relationships and abuse prevention.  The class also discusses resources for soldiers and families. For more information and to register, call 751-6325.

    Sexual Assault Prevention & Response Program Overview
    This is a unit level annual requirement for all soldiers.  Training should be conducted utilizing training support packages developed by TRADOC (see below). 
    Training Support Packages
    TRADOC has developed Sexual Assault Prevention and Response training support packages (TSPs) and posted them on the Reimer Digital Library. The TSPs are designed to facilitate standardized and progressive/sequential instruction at all levels.
    http://www.sexualassault.army.mil/content/training_packages.cfm

    Advocacy staff members are available to conduct training if requested.  For more information call 751-6325

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    Treatment and Counseling
    Social Work Services provides intervention, assessment, diagnosis, treatment, counseling and rehabilitation services for individuals, couples and groups needing treatment for family abuse, marriage counseling and anger management services, call 751-2216.

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     Additional Services

    Awareness & Special Events
    The Soldier and Family Readiness Program (SAFR) sponsor events and activities in April for Child Abuse Prevention Month, April Sexual

    Assault Awareness month, and in October for Domestic Violence Awareness Month.  The program also links with other community events: unit organizational days, safety day, Earth Day, and other prevention and awareness programs throughout the year.  For more information, call 751-6325.

     

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    Lending Library
    Books and videos are available for all soldiers, family members and federal employees who are interested in reading or viewing video tapes on parenting, child development, domestic violence and other prevention and awareness issues in the privacy of their own home.  Borrowing time is 3 days for videos and 2-weeks for books.  The list of books and videos available as well as the procedures for borrowing may be obtained at our Soldier and Family Readiness Office.

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ACS Calendar:
November - December