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David Wexler, clinical psychologist and executive director, Relationship Training Institute San Diego, explains the causes of domestic violence during the Skills, Techniques, Options and Plans training program at the Education Center, Aug. 17, 2016. (Official Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Thomas Mudd/Released)

Photo by Cpl. Thomas Mudd

Combat Center victim advocates receive STOP training

8 Sep 2016 | Cpl. Thomas Mudd Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms

Victim advocates and clinicians aboard the Combat Center attended the Skills, Techniques, Options and Plans training program held at the Education Center, Aug. 17-19, 2016.

The three-day training program, given by Dr. David Wexler, clinical psychologist and executive director, Relationship Training Institute San Diego, teaches attendees how to better support military personnel and their families in instances of domestic violence.

The training covered the types of domestic violence, the causes and how advocates can best help the individuals who come through their respective offices.

“For years, different Marine bases have been using the domestic violence treatment programs that my institute developed,” Wexler said. “I go to those bases to train the staff on how to use our programs to the best of their ability.”

The training also covered some psychological issues that can lead to offenders abusing their spouse and how to reach and understand these offenders. This understanding gives the Combat Center’s advocates and clinicians the tools they need to help reduce instances of domestic violence.

“I attended this training to further my knowledge about domestic violence,” said Natasha Ratchford, victims’ advocate, Family Advocacy. “This course prepares us for the different scenarios we may face while working in this field. The knowledge we gain here helps us reach the people who suffer from domestic violence and help them in the best way possible.”

Wexler conducts this training on approximately eight different installations annually and contributes updated ideas and tools for the entities aboard the Combat Center to use while handling a domestic violence case.

“This is one of the most rewarding things I do,” Wexler said. “I consistently hear from the people I teach that the new ideas have contributed to their ability to help people. To know that what I’m saying during the classes is helping people is the best thing I could ask for.”

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Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms