About Safe Passage Center
The Safe Passage Center services are offered free to families who have a Montgomery County court order requiring supervised visitation or monitored exchanges. Our services are typically appropriate for families experiencing:
- Domestic violence
- Mental health concerns
- Substance use issues
- Extended parental absence
- Child neglect and/or abuse
- Family conflict
In addition to family unity, safety is a top priority at the Safe Passage Center. To allow for increased safety, we have separate parking lots, entrances, and waiting rooms so that parents in conflict do not meet or interact at the Center. We provide staggered drop-off and pick-up
When a family is referred to the Safe Passage Center by the county court system, we meet with each family for an initial assessment and intake. During this process, we discuss our program and expectations, as well as scheduling so that visits are conveniently arranged for all parties. We want to ensure that parents can attend all scheduled visits, and if needed, transportation passes are available. Following intake, the residential parent is offered the opportunity to bring their child to the center for an orientation so they can become comfortable with our procedures, visitation rooms, and team members.
Supervised visitation: During supervised visitations, families meet in one of our animal-themed rooms, or during appropriate weather days, outside in our courtyard. Our rooms are equipped with books, games, toys, televisions, refrigerators, microwaves, game systems, and comfortable furniture to allow for meaningful, interactive visits. We encourage families to bring a “Visit Bag” to make each visit special and unique for them. Visits are scheduled once a week for two hours, but may vary depending on a family’s schedule and the availability of the center. The visits are monitored by a staff member who unobtrusively monitors the visit and submits an impartial report to the court.
- Monitored exchange: For parents needing a safe place to exchange custody or their children, Safe Passage Center staff will supervise the transfer of a child from the residential parent to the visiting parent at the start of the parent/child contact, and back to the residential parent at the end of the contact. The supervision is limited to the exchange and the visit is typically unsupervised, with the visiting parent free to enjoy their time with the child. This service allows for exchanges free of conflict between parents, increased safety for the residential parent, and, most importantly, decreases stress on the children.