COVID-19 resources on domestic violence

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Responding to the challenges of COVID-19: guidance for multi-agency forums (including Maracs)

SafeLives

The potential threat of COVID-19 to the health and safety of frontline staff and service users poses a real and immediate challenge for safeguarding families at risk of domestic abuse. This document provides advice to help multi-agency forums, including Multi Agency Risk Assessment Conferences (Marcs), be flexible and respond to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. It covers advice on using virtual forums; managing meetings; assessing additional risk posed to victims of domestic abuse and their children; and safety planning to maximising the opportunity for safe communication between vulnerable families and services. Version date: 19 March 2020.

Last updated on hub: 08 June 2020

Responding to the challenges of COVID-19: guidance for practitioners working with domestic abuse perpetrators

Respect

This document offers advice to professionals and practitioners who are working with domestic abuse perpetrators during the COVID-19 crisis. It is based on the learning from conversations with accredited services working with perpetrators and victims of domestic abuse and national and international experts. The document recommends that all practitioners follow their own organisation’s health and safety guidance, safeguarding procedures and business and contingency protocols. When considering any changes to existing service provision, a set of principles, outlined in the Respect Service Standard, remain important. They are: safety first; do not harm; the system matters; support for the staff. The document also signposts to additional resources, advice and support services.

Last updated on hub: 30 June 2020

Roadmap for frontline professionals interacting with male perpetrators of domestic violence and abuse

The roadmap set out in this report aims to assist frontline professionals in health care or social services, child protection services, police, and others, coming into contact with male service users who are violent or abusive to their female partners. Working with these men to change their behaviour is a key step towards preventing domestic violence. The contents of the roadmap are based on a review of the relevant literature and input from frontline professionals, male perpetrators and experts working with perpetrators who agreed to take part in focus groups or interviews in three European countries (France, Italy, Spain) as part of the ENGAGE project. The roadmap consists of introductory chapters to set the stage for engaging perpetrators, covering definitions and consequences of violence and abuse; accountability and victim safety; and beliefs towards men who use domestic violence. A flowchart then introduces the four steps to engage and refer perpetrators: step 1 – identifying domestic violence and abuse in men; step 2 – asking men about domestic violence and abuse; step 3 – motivating men for referral; and step 4 – referring men to perpetrator programmes within a coordinated multi-agency response. A subsequent chapter deals with professional, personal and legal dilemmas professionals might encounter in this work. The last chapter summarises 12 do’s and don’ts when engaging with a perpetrator. The references and an extensive annex of tools and resources complete the roadmap.

Last updated on hub: 15 July 2020

Safeguarding: remote and blended learning: challenges and approaches

Education and Training Inspectorate

This paper identifies the key safeguarding challenges faced by schools and educational and training organisations during the period of educational closures due to COVID-19 and how these have been approached across all phases of education and training. Challenges include: the impact of the absence of day-to-day contact with more vulnerable children and young people; the reported increase in domestic abuse cases during COVID-19; a need to have updated policies reflecting a change to e-learning practices; concerns regarding the use of online remote learning platforms or communication methods; the high numbers of apprentices who have lost their jobs or been furloughed; most European Social Fund (ESF) projects lacking the IT infrastructure for remote learning and on-line support for their participants. The paper sets out a range of examples from each phase detailing how specific organisations have responded and the approaches they have put in place.

Last updated on hub: 20 July 2020

Service response to domestic abuse during COVID-19: ESSS Outline

The Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services

This evidence summary seeks to address the following question relating to domestic abuse: How are services currently responding to domestic abuse during COVID-19? The summary largely draws on the developing guidelines and recommendations that statutory and third sector organisations are producing with regards to domestic abuse and COVID-19.

Last updated on hub: 05 June 2020

Staying safe during COVID-19: a guide for victims and survivors of domestic abuse

SafeLives

Guide for staying safe during COVID-19 for victims and survivors produced by the charity SaveLives.

Last updated on hub: 04 June 2020

Staying safe during COVID-19: guidance for practitioners working with those who harm

SafeLives

Guidance to help practitioners working with perpetrators of domestic violence during the COVID-19 crisis. The document explores: how to ensure clients get support from family and friends; self-care; general safety planning; structured strategy to help clients de-escalate situations before they become violent or abusive; and supporting support workers.

Last updated on hub: 30 June 2020

Supporting ‘off-radar’ children and young people who are at risk of violence/abuse in their household: Part 1 (interim report)

Survivors’ Voices

This survivor-led report contains relevant possible actions to support children who are 'off-radar' (unknown to any statutory services) during and post pandemic 'lockdown' periods. It provides an initial collation and thematic analysis of the results of a survivor-led and rapid-response survey. This was targeted at people who had experience of being abused as children whilst unknown to safeguarding or support services, in order to capture the wisdom of lived experience regarding what practical actions may help reach this population. Actions and recommendations cover a range of topics and thematic areas, which are grouped into the settings to which they apply. These include: schools, nurseries, and childcare; other statutory services; youth organisations and other voluntary agencies and services that work with young people; government and national and international agencies; communities and families. The report suggests that the overwhelming consensus is that there is a need for a major awareness-raising and information campaign using TV/media and a variety of social and other media; and to develop ways to ensure children and young people can communicate with those who can help, including apps, a free phone helpline and web-based links.

Last updated on hub: 17 June 2020

Tackling domestic abuse during the COVID-19 pandemic: resource for councils

Local Government Association

Brings together resources to offer help, guidance and support for councils to tackle domestic abuse during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The document provides a brief overview of domestic abuse; looks at the new risks for domestic abuse victims and survivors during the COVID-19 pandemic; and identifies ways that councils can provide support to domestic abuse victims and tackle perpetrators’ behaviour. It highlights importance of strong partnership working between agencies; providing information on safe accommodation options; identifying safeguarding arrangements needed for children and young people; and continuing Multi-Agency Risk Assessment Conferences (MARAC) through virtual meetings. It includes links to a wide range of guidance and supporting resources. The document will be updated as and when necessary.

Last updated on hub: 22 April 2020

The impact of the coronavirus pandemic on child welfare: domestic abuse

National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children

This briefing uses insight from NSPCC helpline contacts and Childline counselling sessions to highlight the impact of domestic abuse on children and young people during the coronavirus pandemic. Domestic abuse is any type of controlling, bullying, threatening or violent behaviour between people who are, or have been, in a relationship. Between 23 March and 17 May 2020 the NSPCC helpline received 1,500 contacts from adults worried about the impact of domestic abuse on children, and Childline delivered over 500 counselling sessions to children and young people who were worried about domestic abuse. The key themes of these contacts include: reduced access to support networks; and lockdown bringing domestic abuse into sharp focus – making it harder to speak out, making it more difficult to leave, drinking during lockdown, exploiting fears about the coronavirus, young people worried about other family members.

Last updated on hub: 16 June 2020