Service offer in the City for Domestic Violence & Abuse
Domestic violence and abuse is the abuse of someone within an intimate or family relationship. It is the repeated, random and habitual use of intimidation to control another person – usually a partner, ex-partner or other family member.
Abuse can be physical, emotional, psychological, financial, sexual, or a combination of these. Anyone forced to alter their behaviour because they’re frightened of someone’s reaction is being abused.
As part of the “Delivering Differently” strategic review, Manchester now has:
- a new Delivering Differently Strategy
- a Domestic Violence & Abuse (DV&A) Forum, responsible for the strategy action plan led by Cllr Sarah Judge; and
- an Integrated Commissioning Panel.
Our DV&A offer includes:
- a helpline
- six commissioned refuges, one of which is BME
- a dispersed LGBT accommodation offer with an IDVA
- three midwifery outreach workers attached to all maternity units
- behaviour change programmes for victims
- behaviour change programmes for perpetrators
- a whole family approach pilot
- IRIS GP screening in GP practices city-wide
- a commissioned outreach service
- an in-house IDVA service and a specialist in-house DV&A homelessness unit
- a commissioned theraputic intervention for up to 50 children/young people affected by DV&A (The Children’s Society); and
- an in house part time DV support worker for children.
The Children’s Services lead officers for DV&A are Jo Dalton in Early Help and Justine Guiffra for Children’s Social Care. Primacy for DV&A in the City is governed by the Community Safety Partnership.
The DV&A staff offer includes:
- MSB training on DV&A awareness
- commissioned specialist training for 225 Early Help Hub (EHH) staff on DV&A awareness and the service offer
- the Safe & Together DV&A social work model training for social work staff; and
- MCC DV&A staff policy.
Both the EHH and the Integrated Commissioning Panel use the hot cluster spatial analysis to plan services.
Practice development and understanding of DV&A on children and young people
The animations are available on MCC’s You Tube site – the six animations can be found together in one playlist www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLATXabx7aJUqpbR0xFBBUOX_v5WTATVEs
Services often focus primarily on the physical and emotional danger resulting from incidents of violence; however the reality is that domestic violence perpetrators hurt children in many ways. Whether it is through their choice to expose children to their violence against another parent; through direct physical maltreatment; or by using a child as a weapon against the other parent, domestic violence perpetrators create safety and risk concerns for children.
A domestic violence perpetrator can harm children by interfering with another parent’s substance abuse recovery or sabotaging a child’s mental health treatment. At the extreme of the spectrum, domestic violence perpetrators’ patterns of coercive control are frequently present in cases that end in a critical incident or child death.
While some children appear to be resilient and show no symptoms, many children who are exposed to a parent’s violent behaviour display externalising and internalising behaviours including aggression, anxiety, depression, post traumatic stress disorder, educational and social problems and long term adjustment issues.
Children who are exposed to domestic abuse are at risk of serious emotional, psychological and physical harm. In particular, there is growing evidence that trauma resulting from childhood exposure to domestic abuse can lead to insecure and disorganised attachment patterns, adolescent delinquency and a trajectory of dysfunction in adulthood including violence, addiction and mental illness.
From a child welfare perspective, the existence of clear evidence that there is intergenerational transmission of domestic abuse highlights a potential risk. Children who are born to parents who were exposed to domestic abuse as children are vulnerable to being exposed to domestic abuse themselves. Researchers have estimated that approximately 30% of children who have witnessed domestic abuse between parents go on to become violent or victims of abuse in their adult relationships.
For a child’s point of view, when they have been exposed to domestic violence and abuse they need to feel safety, have access to stability and to be able to talk about what happened so that can make sense of their world.
Safe and Together Model
The model is based on research evidence and has been found to be effective when it has been put into practice in parts of the USA.
On Monday 9th October, the Manchester Safe and Together launch introduced the model to practitioners from a range of agencies across Manchester.
Practitioners will be trained as champions of the model and will use Safe and Together tools when working with families and also provide support and advice to other workers on domestic abuse.
Visit the website endingviolence.com
David Mandel, the creator of the Safe & Together model, describes the importance of achieving domestic violence skills and competencies in order to achieve the mission of child welfare and child serving professionals on Youtube at www.youtube.com/watch?v=0c_fyEgpaQ4