If you are likely to come into contact with victims of domestic abuse through your work make sure you are familiar with:
- local procedures around the Multi Agency Risk Assessment Conference (MARAC)
- the DASH (Domestic Abuse, Stalking and Honour Based Violence) Risk Indicator Checklist.
A MARAC is a single meeting that enables professionals to share information to increase the safety, health and well-being of victims of abuse. Further information can be found on the Safe Lives website.
There is also a MARAC video explaining why MARACs were set up, how they help high risk victims of domestic abuse and the types of professionals that are expected to attend.
There are four MARACs in West Sussex. Senior members of each agency attend their MARAC once a month to manage the highest-risk domestic abuse cases.
MARACs have been operating effectively in West Sussex since May 2008 and have discussed in excess of 3,000 high-risk domestic abuse cases. On average around 25% of these cases are defined as repeats (discussed at MARACs within the past year). It became clear that in some critical cases there was a need for ongoing multi-agency risk management. This is done through MARAC+.
Members meet monthly to:
- share information and understand the risks
- develop robust risk management plans
- review efficacy of plans
- review and record results.
MARAC+ members also communicate between meetings to keep plans live and responsive.
- CAADA/DASH risk identification checklist (PDF, 273KB)
- MARAC flowchart (PDF, 30KB)
- MARAC referral form (Word, 130KB)
- MARAC+ flowchart (PDF, 53KB)
Below are details of training and guidelines offered by other organisations for front line workers.
National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE)
The recommendations of NICE cover the broad spectrum of domestic violence and abuse.
Guidance is for:
- health and social care commissioners
- specialist domestic violence and abuse staff
- others whose work may bring them into contact with people who experience or perpetrate domestic violence and abuse.
It may also interest members of the public.
Supports a strong multi-agency response to domestic abuse, focusing on saving lives - and public money. Its website provides guidance, and details of how to contact your local SafeLives co-ordinator and representatives.
It also provides practical help to support professionals and organisations working with domestic abuse victims.
Offers advice to front-line workers about working with domestic violence perpetrators alongside its confidential helpline for perpetrators.
Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP)
The RCGP website has a section dedicated to domestic violence:
- guidelines on commissioning and responding to domestic abuse
- a free online course called ‘Violence against Women and Children’ aimed at primary healthcare professionals.
Safer Arun Partnership
Works together with communities in the Arun area to drive down crime and build a place where people feel safer.
It can offer:
- help to sort out a problem
- funding for community projects from time to time.
Whether you work with survivors, deliver a service or are an employer wanting to support your staff, the Women's Aid National Training Centre offers expertise to equip you with tools to understand and respond effectively to domestic violence.
Worth Institute of Training sits in the Domestic and Sexual Violence Unit, based in the Safeguarding Unit of West Sussex County Council.
It offers first-class training on all issues around domestic abuse. All courses are:
- developed and informed by frontline practitioners in the relevant field
- delivered by a subject expert and a WORTH Services Independent Domestic Violence Advisor (IDVA).
The courses it currently offers are all 1-day and free of charge:
- Parents as partners in tackling child sexual exploitation (PDF, KB)
- Abuse in young people’s intimate relationships (PDF, KB)
- Domestic abuse awareness (PDF, KB)
Contact the training course administrator to book a place: