Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services
Strategies to End Gender-Based Violence
Crime Victims Services


24 HOUR HOTLINE(845) 634-3344

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About Us

Leadership and Staff

Center for Safety & Change staff brings a wealth of expertise and experience to the development and implementation of highly effective programs for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. Center for Safety & Change employs approximately 50 full and part-time staff, including eight Program Directors who supervise direct care staff, consisting primarily of counselors and advocates, several of whom are bilingual and/or bicultural. Center for Safety & Change direct care staff also includes coordinators from and for the African-American, Haitian, Hispanic, Asian, Orthodox Jewish, and LGBTQ (Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/ Transgender/Queer/Questioning) communities. Two full-time attorneys and a part-time paralegal provide client legal assistance through the Mary Weingard Domestic Violence Law Project (DVLP).


ELIZABETH SANTIAGO, Executive Director

Elizabeth Santiago is an activist working on social justice issues for over 20 years.  Elizabeth is recognized for her expertise on issues of domestic violence, sexual assault and violence against women.  Elizabeth is the Executive Director of Center for Safety & Change, the sole victim assistance provider in Rockland County, serving victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, and all other crimes, such as elder abuse and hate crimes.

Elizabeth is sought as an adviser, consultant and trainer both locally and nationally.  Elizabeth serves as a liaison with federal, state and local agencies and works with various systems and political leaders to develop legislation and coordinate service networks.

Elizabeth currently serves on the New York State Office of Victim Services Advisory Council, the New York State Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence Fatality Review Team, the New York State Downstate Coalition, the Lower Hudson Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the Rockland County Citizen Advisory Council. Elizabeth also serves as co-chair of the Rockland County Stop F.E.A.R. Coalition.  Elizabeth has previously served on the board of the New York State Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NYSCADV) and the Legal Aid Society of Rockland County. 

Elizabeth is the co-founder of the Boston College Archbishop Oscar Romero Scholarship for students who demonstrate a balance in academics and social justice community service. Elizabeth graduated from Boston College with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and has a Certificate in Non-Profit Sustainability from Cornell University.  Elizabeth is an alumna of Leadership Rockland class of 2007.

AMY SINISCALCHI, Deputy Executive Director 

Amy Siniscalchi, LMSW, is the Deputy Executive Director at the Center for Safety & Change and is responsible for the overall management of the agency’s shelter, counseling, advocacy, and legal services programs. Since joining the Center in 2017, Amy has been co-chairing the multi- disciplinary STOP F.E.A.R. Coalition Criminal Justice Committee and the STOP F.E.A.R. Anti- Human Trafficking Task Force, and has helped develop and launch a new pilot program to prevent domestic violence homicides. 

Amy has worked for over 20 years in the areas of domestic violence, human trafficking, child abuse, and children/youth services, serving most recently as the Assistant Executive Director of Children, Youth and Family Services at Westchester Jewish Community Services. Prior to that, Amy worked for over 10 years at My Sisters’ Place (MSP) in Westchester County as the Chief Program Officer, helping launch the agency’s human trafficking program, starting a Pet Safety Project, and significantly expanding the collaborative program with Child Protective Services, the largest program of its kind in New York State.  

Amy has published articles related to secondary trauma and human trafficking, and served for five years as a board member for the New York State Coalition Against Domestic Violence.  She earned her BA from Vassar College and MSW from Hunter College, and is a graduate of Leadership Westchester.

Administrative Staff

VENESIA DEFRANK, Director of Domestic Violence Case Management


JESSICA FRANJUL, Director of Operations 

BARBARA HARRINGTON, Director of Domestic Violence Services 

TRACIE MCLEE, Director of Development 

CINDY MCMURTRIE, Director of Volunteer & Community Relations 

LAURA PLOTKIN, Director of Training & Education 


JEAN ROEMER, Director of Children, Youth & Counseling Services 

The Staff