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Message To Providers

First and foremost, thank you for your passion and dedication to serving survivors of domestic violence in Florida. All of us at the Department of Children and Families (DCF) appreciate the challenging nature of your work, and we recognize the undeniable value of the services you provide. You are true agents of change, helping survivors and their families cope with the overwhelming trauma of abuse and eventually begin to heal.

As you may know, DCF was statutorily required to contract with the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence to administer domestic violence support services in Florida, and we have been doing so for nearly two decades. In 2018, it came to our attention that a member of the Coalition’s executive-level leadership was allegedly receiving an exorbitant salary. With this information, we immediately began to request documents detailing Coalition expenditures and financial activity. For over a year, our requests were skirted, and in some cases, dismissed altogether.

Recently, Governor DeSantis, members of the Florida Legislature, and DCF began to receive clarity on this issue. While we have significant concerns regarding the Coalition, and we are preparing to sever contractual ties with the organization, our priority is to maintain funding to direct domestic violence services for survivors and their families. In fact, it is our main priority to ensure there are no interruptions in services and to stay true to our shared mission – helping Florida’s most vulnerable.

Moving forward, I encourage you to remain committed to all the domestic violence survivors who are depending on us.

If you have any questions, please contact Melissa Jaacks, C.P.A. Chief Executive for Domestic Violence Services at


Chad Poppell

©2019 Florida Department of Children & Families