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Supervised Visitation

May is Supervised Visitation Awareness Month. The BrightHouse Parenting Time Center offers supervised visits and monitored exchanges in a safe neutral environment for families in Reno and surrounding counties. Two Hugoton, Kansas women were recently brutally murdered in a crime that may have been prevented with a safe supervised visit site. A 5th person has been arrested in the tragic murders of Veronica Butler and Jilian Kelley. It has been revealed that (1) the case stemmed from a bitter custody battle, (2) the mother, Veronica Butler, had off-site supervised visits and was traveling to exchange her children, and (3) Jilian Kelley was a court ordered supervisor for the family. These revelations underscore the significance of supervised visitation and monitored exchange services in ensuring the safety and well-being of children and families in contentious custody situations.

There are no centers like the Parenting Time Center in Stevens County or the Panhandle of Oklahoma. This lack of local resources highlights the challenges faced by families in accessing supervised visitation services in those areas. The nearest provider for supervised visits/monitored exchanges for Hugoton is 105 miles away in Colorado.

Using friends or relatives as supervisors often leads to a strain on relationships, difficulty maintaining neutrality, and may detract from the quality of parent-child

interactions. Monitored exchanges at our Reno County center provide a safe, neutral environment, with measures such as keeping parties separate, enforcing staggered arrival times, conducting thorough intakes, and documenting behaviors. These exchanges occur in well-lit, secure facilities with established safety protocols and trained security personnel. Utilizing such facilities prevents children from witnessing emotionally charged conflicts common in unsupervised exchanges. Supervised visits and exchanges ensure children can maintain relationships with both parents without being caught in their conflicts. They offer reassurance to primary guardians about their children's safety and provide non-residential parents or relatives with uninterrupted contact.

The BrightHouse Parenting Time Center does not require a court order to use our services. If both parties agree either supervised visits or exchange services can be used voluntarily for any length of time. To get services started an intake is completed separately with each party to discuss family dynamics, services, and policies of the Parenting Time Center. Once completed, services may begin and last however long agreed upon. The Parenting Time Center can be a solution during short term concerns or long term depending on the needs of each family.

In light of these circumstances, it's evident that organizations like the Parenting Time Center are essential for providing much-needed support and assistance to families navigating complex custody arrangements. Our commitment to ensuring

safe and supervised exchanges remains unwavering, and we are dedicated to serving families in need, regardless of their location or circumstances. We are grateful to serve the families in our community. Our hearts are with the families and friends of the victims from Hugoton.

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