In early 1993, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Illinois convened the Illinois Family Violence Coordinating Council (IFVCC) to address child abuse, domestic violence and elder abuse. In September of that year Chief Judge of the 10th Circuit, Honorable Donald Courson and the first IFVCC Co-Chair, Honorable Bruce Black convened the Tenth Circuit Family Violence Local Coordinating Council, the 2nd to be formed in the state. Judge Black stated, “The ability to pursue justice depends on the partnerships that we cultivate.”
The IFVCC is the only judicially led family violence organization in the country that operates statewide at both the local and state level. Judges bring leaders of all professions to the table and inspire others with the possibility for improvements and changes. This is no truer than in the 10th Circuit. So much has been accomplished by the collaborations that have been formed in our area that have enabled the Council to bring awareness, education, training, and protocol development to all forms of family violence including domestic abuse, child abuse, elder abuse, abuse of people with disabilities as well as human trafficking. Council members represent the many systems that interact with family violence victims and perpetrators to include judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, law enforcement, probation, circuit clerks, school personnel, healthcare providers and social service professionals.
Funding for this program originally was monitored through the Administrative Office of Illinois Courts but in recent years has been a grant monitored through the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority. The Council has in the past five years also received additional funding through a U.S. Office of Violence Against Women Grant to Encourage Arrest and Enforcement of Orders of Protection to develop model protocols and training curriculum for law enforcement, prosecutors and judges. This is in recognizing that a coordinated intervention by the justice system is a significant factor in reducing domestic violence.
Mary Taylor has been the Coordinator of the Local Family Violence Coordinating Council nearly since its’ inception and has been a Peoria County Employee for 20 years, receiving the 2007 Partners in Peace Award on behalf of the Criminal Justice System. “Mary is an inspiration to those of us in the justice system and her dedicated work has positively impacted many lives in the five county Tenth Judicial Circuit,” said current Chief Judge Paul Gilfillan. Should you have any questions regarding the Council or wish to become part of this organization that is making an impact in our community please contact Mary at 309-672-6992 or firstname.lastname@example.org.