What is the process?
What happens when I call?
The callers’ first step to accessing LAWS’ services is to call our 24-Hour Crisis Hotline at 703-777-6552. An advocate will immediately answer the call and provide needed support as well as information about services and the next steps to keep the victim and their children safe. The advocate will work with the caller to assess what services might be needed or helpful. If shelter is requested, the advocate will explore our shelter options with the victim. If other services offered by LAWS are needed (such as therapy or legal services), the advocate will refer the victim to services available at the LAWS Community Services Center.
At times when our advocates are on the line with another caller, our hotline calls may roll automatically to the Virginia Family Violence and Sexual Assault Hotline. We partner with the Virginia Family Violence and Sexual Assault Hotline to ensure that all of our calls are answered immediately by a trained advocate, even if we cannot answer the call at that moment.
In the event you are calling for LAWS and the Virginia Family Violence and Sexual Assault hotline answers your call, simply explain that you are seeking LAWS’ services or shelter and they will connect you to one of our on-call advocates as quickly as possible.
If you are seeking shelter or help with a crisis and need help immediately, be sure to tell the advocate at the Family Violence and Sexual Assault Hotline this information so that they notify us immediately.
In the event of a life-threatening or medical emergency, ALWAYS call 911.
LAWS 24-Hour Crisis Hotline
LAWS operates a 24-hour domestic violence and sexual assault crisis hotline staffed by trained advocates and volunteers. Victims of domestic violence and sexual assault concerned persons in the community, advocates, professionals, law enforcement, courts, or any other person who needs information about domestic or sexual violence services and community resources can call.
Advocates and trained volunteers are available to respond to all inquiries for information, safety planning, referrals, shelter and/or appropriate outside services. Calls can be made anonymously—you are free to only give information you feel comfortable sharing. If the caller needs interpretation services, language line interpretation services are available in any language.