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What is Safe Exchange?
Safe Exchange allows a child to transition between parents without the parents having contact. Parents who use safe exchange generally have a shared custody agreement, or a non-custodial parent has unsupervised visitation with the child. When there is family conflict or a safety concerns, safe exchange services are a low-stress alternative.
Parents arrive and depart FVP at different times and use different entrances. Some parents exchange their child for a few hours, and others may exchange for the weekend or longer.
Safe Exchange allows a child to transition between parents for a weekend and/or short unsupervised visits (up to 5 hours) without contact between parents. When there is potential for conflict or safety issues during exchanges, safe-exchange services offer a safe alternative. Children are not dropped off at the program – staff and volunteers simply move the child from one parent to the other without the parents having contact.
All services take place on-site at the Family Visitation Program, and our primary goal is to ensure the safety of every person who uses our services. Clients are referred via the court system, the Department of Social Services, and family mediation. If both parents are in agreement to use safe exchange services, verbal agreement can also be accepted.
Why use Safe Exchange?
- Children can transition between parents without conflict between parents.
- FVP makes all arrangements for exchange times between the parents, so parents can exchange without having contact.
- Parents can avoid involving friends or family members since it can be hard to find someone both parents agree is neutral.
How much does it cost?
Safe exchanges cost $45 per exchange. The Family Visitation Program offers a sliding scale based on income (Please Click Here to View the Sliding Scale). Clients may apply for a fee reduction based on their household income. Families whose income does not appear on the sliding scale do not qualify for a fee reduction. Fee reductions will only be considered once all required income verification documentation has been received.
Exchange fees are paid by both parties, unless the court order states otherwise. Other fees may apply to either party for cancellations, document release, guests, etc.
Submit payment for your Safe Exchange here:
How do I get started?
Contact the Family Visitation Program to set up an intake appointment. Intake appointments take about 1.5 hours. During the intake appointment, staff will listen and answer questions. Intake appointments also include going over the program policies and procedures and touring the facility. Each parent or guardian attends intake separately. After both parents have completed intake, visits can begin. It generally takes up to 4 weeks for both parents to complete intake and start visits, so make your intake appointment as soon as you are ready. Intake forms can be viewed here. Click here to view the Safe Exchange handbook.
See what our facility looks like: Photos of the Family Visitation Program