This report should be required reading for anyone interested in or developing a domestic violence court. Eleven chapters follow an executive summary: introduction; review of relevant research; research design; domestic violence court goals; history, structure, and staffing; case processing laws and policies; victim safety and services; offender assessments and program mandates; supervision and court responses to noncompliance; additional insights from qualitative analysis; and conclusion and implications. Some major findings include: increasing victim safety is rated “extremely important” by the majority of the domestic violence courts; the majority of courts had dedicated victim advocates; the majority of courts did not assess offenders; and 62% of the courts offered probation supervision to offenders. A "National Compendium of Domestic Violence Courts" is also included.
It is critical that people learn about the intersection of trauma, mental health challenges, and substance use and how they will impact women and girls and their families and communities and overall well-being. Representatives from more than three dozen federal agencies have gotten together to focus on this issue and to develop collective strategies to address its impact. This webinar held May 29, 2014 aimed to address: "the historical context of the intersection of mental health substance abuse and trauma; review current research of the problems of trauma and adverse experiences, and the impacts of that on women and girls; highlight two evidence-based practices of seeking safety in the trauma resolution center; and the core components of a trauma-informed approach when focusing on these intersections". The presentations given during this webinar are: "SAMHSA's Women and Violence Study Trauma Services in Public Mental Health [WCDVS]" by Susan Salasin; "Adverse Childhood Experiences: Impacts on Health & Wellbeing across the Life Course" by Melissa Merrick; "Seeking Safety: An Evidence-Based Model for Trauma and/or Addiction" by Lisa M. Najavits; and "If It Works in Miami…a Model Program for Serving Traumatized Human Beings" by Teresa Descilo.
“Offenders are exposed to violence at higher rates than the general population. Whether exposure to violence contributes to subsequent maladjustment once these individuals are incarcerated, however, is unclear … Inmate maladjustment [the inability of inmates to cope with confinement] threatens the safety and order of correctional institutions, so a thorough understanding of the relative effects of exposure to different forms of violence on maladjustment is important to prison/correctional facility administrators. Using data from the Survey of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities and the Census of State and Federal Correctional Facilities, we examined the relationship between exposure to violence and maladjustment within and across state operated prisons and correctional facilities in the United States.” Results are presented for: analyses of exposure (direct and indirect) to violence and maladjustment; inmate-level effects on maladjustment; and the main and moderating facility-level effects on maladjustment. The exposure to violence an inmate experiences prior to incarceration increases that inmate’s level of maladjustment with little change across various types of correctional institutions.
Results from a study of the non-specialization of individuals charged with domestic violence (DV) and the relationship between DV and assaultive and criminal behaviors are reported. Sections of this article are: background; profile of domestic violence arrestees; risk factors and DV specialization; comparative failure rates; and conclusions. The most common rearrest charges for DV defendants are failure to appear (20.4%), contempt (7.1%), and simple assault (5.3%).
This document provides “conceptual information and practical tools to develop or enhance” an effective “proactive community supervision approach for domestic violence cases” (p.1). Ten Chapters follow a summary: what difference it makes; fundamentals for community corrections domestic violence practice -- types, causes, perpetrators, victims, and the justice system response to domestic violence; legal issues in the supervision of domestic violence offenders -- legal definitions, jurisdictional issues, civil protection orders, federal and state firearms laws, conditions of probation and pretrial release, enforcement and revocation, confidentiality, and related special issues; culture and domestic violence; core goals for implementing the guidelines -- goals (i.e., victim safety and autonomy, offender accountability, and offender intervention), autonomy and empowerment, practice principles, and inadvisable practices for domestic violence case supervision; guidelines for professional and ethical practice; guidelines for case investigation; guidelines for community supervision and enforcement; guidelines for victim safety and autonomy; and guidelines for batterer intervention programs.
"Recognizing that most inmates are trauma survivors and many common prison routines can re-traumatize women, the Women’s Community Correctional Center of Hawaii, under the leadership of Warden Mark Kawika Patterson, works to create “a place of healing and forgiveness” [pu'uhonua] through its Trauma- Informed Care Initiative (TICI) … Reducing the use of restraints and isolation has been a focus of the training and activities of TICI, since these interventions are likely to re-traumatize women who are trauma survivors and cause trauma responses in women who had not previously experienced trauma" (p. 1). Sections of this publication include: program-at-a-glance; WCCC inmate demography; what trauma is; some potential sources of trauma; trauma's effects on individuals; the consequences of historical trauma; institutional practices can re-traumatize; healing from trauma; planning and implementing the WCCC Trauma-Informed Care Initiative—needs assessment, planning, training on trauma-informed care, and strategic planning; TICI accomplishments—trauma screening and assessment, workforce development, and the use of trauma-informed practices to reduce seclusion and restraint; resources to build the pu'uhonua; keys to success—inspirational leadership, becoming a learning organization, survival participation, community involvement, and partnering with other government agencies, academia, and community-based non-profits.
"Recent research suggests that Deaf women experience higher rates of sexual and domestic violence than their hearing counterparts, but are often shut off from victim services and supports that are ill-equipped to respond to their unique needs. As a result, they are denied access to services that could help them safely flee from abuse, heal from trauma, and seek justice after they have been harmed. This policy brief offers practical suggestions for expanding and enhancing Deaf survivors’ access to victim services and other supports" (website). Sections of this publication include: introduction; the Deaf community in the U.S.; research on victimization is limited; higher rates of domestic and sexual violence; unique experiences of violence; barriers to services and justice; Services for Deaf, by Deaf—a promising strategy; enhancing the capacity of hearing service providers and systems; collaboration between Deaf and hearing programs; five recommendations; and conclusion.
Results from two studies regarding the effectiveness of batterer intervention programs are relayed. Sections of this report include: Broward County -- does stake-in-conformity matter most?; types of batterer interventions; Brooklyn -- is longer treatment more effective?; program and research issues; and new directions for protecting victims (e.g., rethinking intervention, linking batterer programs to other programs and responses, and improving evaluations). "Neither program changed subjects' [male batterers] attitudes toward domestic violence (p. 1)."
“Domestic violence is the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault, and/or other abusive behavior as part of a systematic pattern of power and control perpetrated by one intimate partner against another. It includes physical violence, sexual violence, psychological violence, and emotional abuse. The frequency and severity of domestic violence can vary dramatically; however, the one constant component of domestic violence is one partner’s consistent efforts to maintain power and control over the other. In the United States, an average of twenty people are physically abused by intimate partners every minute. This equates to more than ten million abuse victims annually. Domestic violence affects everyone regardless of age, socio-economic status, sexual orientation, gender, race, religion or nationality and has devastating consequences that last a lifetime. " (p. 2).
If you are looking for an excellent introduction to domestic abuse and issues related to it, then this annotated bibliography is a great place to start. Citations are organized into the following topical areas: Introduction; General; Assessment Instruments; Community Corrections; Courts; State Statutes; Juveniles; Family Programs; Victim Programs; Victim Programs and Services; Treatment (Perpetrators) ; Safety Planning/Plans; Confidentiality; and Resource Centers.
The fundamentals, cultural considerations, and actions to be taken to address trauma through peer support are explained. “This guide was created for a very specific purpose: to help make trauma-informed peer support available to women who are trauma survivors and who receive or have received mental health and/or substance abuse services. It is designed as a resource for peer supporters in these or other settings who want to learn how to integrate trauma-informed principles into their relationships with the women they support or into the peer support groups they are members of. The goal is to provide peer supporters—both male and female—with the understanding, tools, and resources needed to engage in culturally responsive, trauma-informed peer support relationships with women trauma survivors” (p. 1). Thirteen chapters are in this publication: introduction to trauma and trauma-informed practices; whether one is a trauma survivor or not; peer support fundamentals; gender policies and the criminalization of women; culture and trauma; religion, spirituality, and trauma; trauma-informed peer support across the lifespan; trauma and peer support relationships; self-awareness and self-care; organizational context—working in systems; trauma-informed storytelling and other healing practices; self-inflicted violence and peer support; and reclaiming power through social action.