HUNTERDON COUNTY, NJ - The Hunterdon County Prosecutor's Office and the Domestic Abuse Sexual Assault Crisis Center are working to recruit Volunteer Response Team Advocates in Hunterdon and Warren counties.

According to the release, the advocates are trained community members who provide empathy and information to empower victims of domestic or sexual assault to make informed decisions for themselves and their families.

"DASACC is committed to serving survivors and meeting the community's needs," Jill Zinckgraf, DASACC's executive director, said in the release. "We are grateful and honored to have the opportunity to work closely with the prosecutor's office and serve the increased needs of Hunterdon County."

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"Around the world, there are increasing reports that social distancing, aimed to stop the spread of the coronavirus, is making violence in homes more frequent, more severe and more dangerous," she added. "Mounting data suggests that domestic abuse is on the rise, and not being reported, in the current conditions created by the pandemic."

Acting Hunterdon County Prosecutor Michael J. Williams said his office is pleased to partner with DASACC to offer support and assistance to crime victims in need of help.

"Although most citizens believe that prosecutor's offices exist to investigate and prosecute crimes – indeed, these are core office functions – another, often overlooked bedrock function is assisting crime victims in navigating the criminal justice system during the most traumatic and challenging times of their lives," he said in the release. "These most vulnerable individuals are deserving of our continual support and guidance, which we perform hand-in-hand with partners such as DASACC."

To volunteer, contact Hailey Fritzsch at hfritzsch@dasacc.org.