Drawing upon the evidence to develop a multiagency risk assessment and risk management framework for domestic violence

View author details View Less
  • 1 University of Melbourne, , Australia
  • | 2 University of Melbourne and LaTrobe University, , Australia
  • | 3 University of Melbourne and Royal Women’s Hospital, , Australia
Restricted access
Get eTOC alerts
Rights and permissions Cite this article

Domestic violence poses a threat to the health, safety and wellbeing of women internationally and is associated with a range of physical injuries, chronic mental and physical health issues and death. In recognition of the serious consequences and to guide the allocation of resources, multiple countries have invested in efforts to measure domestic violence risk. This study aimed to determine whether there was an existing validated risk assessment tool with an actuarial element, or a common set of evidence-based risk factors that could be implemented in Victoria, Australia. A tool was sought which would effectively predict risk of severity, lethality and re-assault and support risk management strategies. The tool needed to be suitable for administration by a variety of professionals. Through an audit and analysis of existing tools, the study found an absence of universal standards or guidance for weighting actuarial tools and clear insight into how risk assessments currently inform risk management practice and multidisciplinary responses. However, the literature provides clarity around the key evidence-based risk factors that most commonly form a validated tool for adult victim survivors. The evidence was less definitive in terms of assessing risk of lethality and re-assault for children and young people.

  • Alexander, R. (2018) Family Violence in Australia: The Legal Response, New South Wales, Sydney: Australia: The Federation Press.

  • Almond, L., McManus, M., Brian, D. and Merrington, D. (2017) Exploration of the risk factors contained within the UK’s existing domestic abuse risk assessment tool (DASH): do these risk factors have individual predictive validity regarding recidivism?, Journal of Aggression, Conflict and Peace Research, 9(1): 5868. doi: 10.1108/JACPR-01-2016-0211

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Andrews, D. and Bonta, J. (2006) The Psychology of Criminal Conduct, 4th edn, Cincinnati, OH: Anderson.

  • Arksey, H. and O’Malley, L. (2005) Scoping studies: towards a methodological framework, International Journal of Social Research Methodology, 8(1): 1932. doi: 10.1080/1364557032000119616

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Au, A., Cheung, G., Kropp, R., Yuk-Chung, C., Lam, G. and Sung, P. (2008) A preliminary validation of the brief spousal assault form for the evaluation of risk (B-SAFER) in Hong Kong, Journal of Family Violence, 23(8): 72735. doi: 10.1007/s10896-008-9198-z

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Belfrage, H., Strand, S., Storey, J.E., Gibas, A.L., Kropp, R.P. and Hart, S.D. (2012) Assessment and management of risk for intimate partner violence by police officers using the spousal assault risk assessment guide, Law and Human Behavior, 36(1): 6067. doi: 10.1037/h0093948

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bricknell, S. (2020) Homicide in Australia 2017–18, Australian Institute of Criminology, Statistical Report 23 Canberra: Australia. https://www.aic.gov.au/sites/default/files/2020-05/sr23_homicide_in_australia_2017-18.pdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Campbell, J.C., Webster, D.W. and Glass, N. (2009) The danger assessment: validation of a lethality risk assessment instrument for intimate partner femicide, Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 24(4): 65374. doi: 10.1177/0886260508317180

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Connor-Smith, J., Henning, K., Moore, S. and Holdford, R. (2011) Risk assessments by female victims of intimate partner violence: predictors of risk perceptions and comparison to an actuarial measure, Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 26(12): 251750. doi: 10.1177/0886260510383024

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Department of Human Services (2007) Family Violence Risk Assessemnt and Risk Management Framework and Practice Guides 1–3, Melbourne, Australia: Victorian Government.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Douglas, K. and Kropp, P. (2002) Prevention-based paradigm for violence risk assessment: clinical and research applications, Criminal Justice and Behavior, 29(5): 61758. doi: 10.1177/009385402236735

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Family Safety Victoria (2018) Family Violence Multi-Agency Risk Assessment and Management Framework, Melbourne, Australia: Victorian Government.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Fitz-Gibbon, K., Maher, J., McCulloch, J. and Segrave, M. (2019) Understanding and responding to family violence risks to children: evidence-based risk assesssment for children and the importance of gender, Australian and New Zealand Journal of Criminology, 52(1): 2340. doi: 10.1177/0004865818760378

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Gerth, J., Rossegger, A., Bauch, E. and Endrass, J. (2017) Assessing the discrimination and calibration of the Ontario Domestic Assault Risk Assessment in Switzerland, Partner Abuse, 8(2): 16889. doi: 10.1891/1946-6560.8.2.168

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Glass, N., Perrin, N., Hanson, G., Bloom, T., Gardner, E. and Campbell, J.C. (2008) Risk for reassault in abusive female Same-sex relationships, American Journal of Public Health, 98(6): 102127. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2007.117770

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Graham, L., Sahay, K., Rizo, C., Messing, J. and Macy, R. (2019) The validity and reliability of available intimate partner homicide and reassault risk assessment tools: a systematic review, Trauma, Violence and Abuse, 22(1): 1840. doi: 10.1177/1524838018821952

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hansen, J. (2016) Standards for Treatment with Court Ordered Domestic Violence Offenders: A Process Evaluation, Colorado: Colorado Domestic Violence Offender Management Board, https://cdpsdocs.state.co.us/dvomb/Research/Evaluation.pdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hanson, R., Helmus, L. and Bourhon, G. (2007) The Validity of Risk Assessments for Intimate Partner violence: A Meta-Analysis, Retrieved from Ottawa, https://www.publicsafety.gc.ca/cnt/rsrcs/pblctns/ntmt-prtnr-vlnce/ntmt-prtnr-vlnce-eng.pdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hilton, H. and Ham, E. (2015) Cost-effectiveness of electronic training in domestic violence risk assessment: ODARA 101, Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 30(6): 106573. doi: 10.1177/0886260514539762

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hilton, N.Z., Harris, G.T., Rice, M.E., Houghton, R.E. and Eke, A.W. (2008) An indepth actuarial assessment for wife assault recidivism: the domestic violence risk appraisal guide, Law and Human Behavior, 32: 15063. doi: 10.1007/s10979-007-9088-6

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hilton, N.Z., Harris, G.T., Rice, M.E., Lang, C., Cormier, C.A. and Lines, K.J. (2004) A brief actuarial assessment for the prediction of wife assault recidivism: the ontario domestic assault risk assessment, Psychological Assessment, 16(3): 26775. doi: 10.1037/1040-3590.16.3.267

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hoyle, C. (2008) Will she be safe? A critical analysis of risk assessment in domestic violence cases, Children and Youth Services Review, 30(3): 32337. doi: 10.1016/j.childyouth.2007.10.009

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Jung, S. and Buro, K. (2017) Appraising risk for intimate partner violence in a police context, Criminal Justice and Behavior, 44(2): 24060. doi: 10.1177/0093854816667974

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kebbell, M. (2019). Risk assessment for intimate partner violence: how can the police assess risk?, Psychology, Crime and Law, 25(8): 82946. doi: 10.1080/1068316X.2019.1597087

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kertesz, M., Humphreys, C., Larance, L., Vicary, D., Spiteri-Staines, A. and Ovenden, G. (2019) Working with women who use force: a feasibility study protocol of the Positive (+)SHIFT group work programme in Australia, BMJ, Open e027496. https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/9/5/e027496.citation-tools.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kimball, E. (2016) Edleson revisited: reviewing children’s witnessing of domestic violence 15 years later, Journal of Family Violence, E31: 62537. doi: 10.1007/s10896-015-9786-7

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kropp, P.R. and Hart, S.D. (2000) The Spousal Assault Risk Assessment (SARA) guide: reliability and validity in adult male offenders, Law and Human Behavior, 24(1): 101. doi: 10.1023/A:1005430904495

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kropp, P.R. and Hart, S.D. (2004) The Development of the Brief Spousal Assault Form for the Evaluation of Risk (B-SAFER): A Tool for Criminal Justice Professionals, Canada: Department of Justice, https://www.justice.gc.ca/eng/rp-pr/fl-lf/famil/rr05_fv1-rr05_vf1/rr05_fv1.pdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Marshall, J., Ziersch, E. and Hudson, N. (2008) Family Safety Framework. Final Evaluation Report, Adelaide: South Australian Attorney General’s Department.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Mason, R. and Julian, R. (2009) Analysis of the Tasmania Police Risk Assessment Screening Tool (RAST). Final Report, Sandy Bay, Tasmania: Tasmanian Institute of Law Enforcement Studies.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • McCulloch, J., Maher, J., Fitz-Gibbon, K., Segrave, M. and Roffee, J. (2016) Review of the Family Violence Risk Assessment and Risk Management Framework (CRAF), Australia: Retrieved from Melbourne.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • McEwan, T., Shea, D.E. and Ogloff, J.R.P. (2016) Victoria Police Screening Assessment for Family Violence Risk (VP-SAFvR): Development and Validation, Prepared for Victoria Police by the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, Melbourne: Swinburne University of Technology.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • McEwan, T., Shea, D. and Ogloff, J. (2018) The development of the VP-SAFVR. Criminal Justice and Behaviour, 46(4): 590607. doi: 10.1177/0093854818806031

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Messing, J. and Thaller, J. (2014) Intimate partner violence risk assessment: a primer for social workers, British Journal of Social Work, 45(6): 117. doi: 10.1093/bjsw/bcu012

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Messing, J.T. and Campbell, J. (2016) Informing collaborative interventions: intimate partner violence risk assessment for front line police officers, Policing: A Journal of Policy and Practice, 10(4): 32840. doi: 10.1093/police/paw013

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Messing, J.T., Amanor-Boadu, Y., Cavanaugh, C.E., Glass, N.E. and Campbell, J.C. (2013) Culturally competent intimate partner violence risk assessment: adapting the danger assessment for immigrant women, Social Work Research, 37(3): 26375. doi: 10.1093/swr/svt019

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Messing, J.T., Campbell, J., Wilson, J.S., Brown, S. and Patchell, B. (2017) The lethality screen, Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 32: 20526. doi: 10.1177/0886260515585540

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Myhill, A. and Hohl, K. (2019) The ‘golden thread’: coercive control and risk assessment for domestic violence, Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 34(21–22): 447797. doi: 10.1177/0886260516675464

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Neave, M., Faulkner, P. and Nicholson, T. (2016) Royal Commission into Family Violence: Summary and Recommendations: Victorian Government Printer: Melbourne, Australia, https://www.rcfv.com.au/MediaLibraries/RCFamilyViolence/Reports/RCFV_Full_Report_Interactive.pdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Nicholls, T., Pritchard, M., Reeves, K. and Hilterman, E. (2013) Risk assessment in intimate partner violence: a systematic review of contemporary approaches, Partner Abuse, 4(1): 76168. doi: 10.1891/1946-6560.4.1.76

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Olszowy, L., Jaffe, P., Campbell, M. and Hamilton, L. (2013) Effectiveness of risk assessment tools in differentiating child homicides from other domestic homicide cases, Journal of Child Custody, 10(2): 185206. doi: 10.1080/15379418.2013.796267

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Olver, M.E. and Jung, S. (2017) Incremental prediction of intimate partner violence: an examination of three risk measures, Law and Human Behavior.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Radford, L., Blacklock, N. and Iwi, K. (2006) Domestic abuse risk assessment and safety planning in child protection: assessing perpetrators. In C. Humphreys and N. Stanley (eds) Domestic Violence and Child Protection: Directions for Good Practice, London: Jessica Kingsley.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Rettenberger, M. and Eher, R. (2013) Actuarial risk assessment in sexually motivated Intimate-partner violence, Law and Human Behavior (American Psychological Association), 37(2): 7586. doi: 10.1037/b0000001

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ringland, C. (2018) The Domestic Violence Safety Assessment Tool (DVSAT) and Intimatepartner Repeat Victimization. Crime and Justice Bulletin No 213, New South Wales Sydney: NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Robinson, A. and Howarth, E. (2012) Judging the risk: key determinants in British domestic violence cases, Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 27(8): 1489518. doi: 10.1177/0886260511425792

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Roehl, J., O’Sullivan, C., Webster, D. and Campbell, J. (2005) Intimate Partner Violence Risk Assessment Validation Study: the RAVE Study Practitioner Summary and Recommendations: Validation of Tools for Assessing Risk from Violent Intimate Partners, NCJ 209732, Washington, DC: National Institute of Justice, US Department of Justice. Retrieved from https://www.ojp.gov/pdffiles1/nij/grants/209732.pdf

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Snider, C., Webster, D., O’Sullivan, C.S. and Campbell, J. (2009) Intimate partner violence: development of a brief risk assessment for the emergency department, Academic Emergency Medicine, 16(11): 120816. doi: 10.1111/j.1553-2712.2009.00457.x

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Stanley, N. and Humphreys, C. (2014) Multi-agency risk assessment and management for children and families experiencing domestic violence, Children and Youth Services Review, 47(1): 7885. doi: 10.1016/j.childyouth.2014.06.003

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Storey, J.E., Kropp, P.R., Hart, S.D., Belfrage, H. and Strand, S. (2014) Assessment and management of risk for intimate partner violence by police officers using the brief spousal assault form for the evaluation of risk, Criminal Justice and Behavior, 41(2): 25671. doi: 10.1177/0093854813503960

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Svalin, K. and Levander, S. (2020) The predictive validity of intimate partner violence risk assessments conducted by practitioners in Different settings – a review of the literature, Journal of Police and Criminal Psychology, 35: 11530. doi: 10.1007/s11896-019-09343-4

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Turner, E., Medina, J. and Brown, G. (2019) Dashing hopes? The predictive accuracy of domestic abuse risk asessement by police, British Journal of Criminology, 59(5): 10131034. doi: 10.1093/bjc/azy074

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • United Nations (2017) Glossary on Sexual Exploitation and Abuse: Thematic Glossary of Current Terminology Related to Sexual Exploitation and Abuse in the Context of the United Nations, New York: United Nations https://hr.un.org/sites/hr.un.org/files/SEA%20Glossary%20%20%5BSecond%20Edition%20-%202017%5D%20-%20English_0.pdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Van der Put, C., Gubbels, J. and Assink, M. (2019) Predicting domestic violence: a meta-analysis on the predictive validity of risk assesment tools, Aggression and Violent Behaviour, 47: 100116. doi: 10.1016/j.avb.2019.03.008

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • WHO (World Health Organisation) (2013) Global and regional estimates of violence against women: prevalence and health effects of intimate partner violence and non-partner sexual violence, https://www.who.int/publications/i/item/9789241564625.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Williams, K.R. and Houghton, A.B. (2004) Assessing the risk of domestic violence reoffending: a validation study, Law and Human Behavior, 43755. doi: 10.1023/B:LAHU.0000039334.59297.f0

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Williams, K. and Grant, S. (2006) Empirically Examining the Risk of Intimate Partner Violence: The Revised Domestic Violence Screening Instrument (DVSI-R), Public Health Reports, 121(4): 400408.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 1 University of Melbourne, , Australia
  • | 2 University of Melbourne and LaTrobe University, , Australia
  • | 3 University of Melbourne and Royal Women’s Hospital, , Australia

Content Metrics

May 2022 onwards Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 15 15 15
PDF Downloads 19 19 19

Altmetrics

Dimensions