Office of Criminal Justice Programs: 11th Victims' Facility Celebrated

Thursday, July 08, 2021 | 10:19am

NASHVILLE – The Office of Criminal Justice Programs (OCJP) will help formally open a new Family Justice Center this week in Oak Ridge, bringing together services for victims of domestic abuse, sexual assault and exploitation and elder abuse. The Anderson County Family Justice Center grand opening on July 9 marks the 11th facility of its kind in operation in Tennessee.

“It takes a special community to make a Family Justice Center a reality and Anderson County is one of those few communities in Tennessee with the local collaboration, vision and dedication to reach this milestone,” OCJP Director Jennifer Brinkman said. “Each of the eleven facilities we’ve helped establish brings together people who can help all victims, because they understand the level of needs people have and they’re intensely dedicated to helping them.”

The first center opened in Knoxville in 2006; grand opening will be held on July 16 in Overton County for another new FJC; and, on July 22, formal opening for the Haywood County FJC. That will bring the number of FJCs in Tennessee to 13, more than all except one other state.

Grand opening for the Anderson County Family Justice Center will be Friday, July 9 at 10:00 a.m. EDT at  301 Broadway Avenue, Unit 1A in Oakridge. Operating hours are from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. local time. The center provides a combination of free and confidential services and interventions that are available in one convenient location to help victims break the cycle of violence and become thriving survivors.

Additional FJCs are in Knox, Scott, Sullivan, Madison, Washington, Davidson, Hamilton, Putnam and Shelby Counties. Since the Tennessee Family Justice Center Initiative started in 2012, federal funding from OCJP has totaled more than $15 million.  

A Family Justice Center is a community-wide collaboration of public and nonprofit agencies providing co-located, wraparound services in one safe, convenient, and family-friendly location. In addition to benefiting victims and their families, the FJC model benefits the broader community by reducing competition and redundancy among stakeholders.

The OCJP functions as a strategic planning agency that secures, distributes, and manages federal and state funds for Tennessee, including Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) funds and STOP Violence Against Women Program (STOP) funds.