On the 30th of May 2014, the Victorian Government announced a funding package to strengthen the response to family violence across Victoria. Worth 30-million dollars, it includes expanding the state wide Strengthening Risk Management program that connects family violence, family services, police and the courts. The main aim of the program is to protect women and hold perpetrators to account.
The package is designed to fast track support for women and children, as well as increase the support provided. It also aims to evaluate the effectiveness of current initiatives, such as interventions aimed at men who use violence. An example would be Men’s Behaviour Change programs.
Family violence is the single biggest cause of homelessness in Victoria. In 2012-13, 33 per cent of people seeking assistance from Victorian homelessness services cited domestic and family violence as contributing factor. Almost 50 per cent of women seeking out homelessness services were fleeing domestic violence.
As well as working with women and children experiencing violence, specialist homelessness workers often work with men who use violence. Police may have removed these men from the family home, or they may be part of a family unit where workers suspect or know of violence.
Workers may also be in contact with men who use violence through other activities that a worker facilitates such as access visits, supporting women at court etc. This can be stressful and demanding work, which requires additional skills and expertise.
CHP is hosting a specialist training forum for workers, who may work with men who use violence. The training will be delivered by No To Violence, Male Family Violence Prevention Association and provide information about the dynamics of how men justify and explain their use of violence, recognising and managing risk and ongoing assessment and monitoring.
This training will equip workers with practical skills and up-to-date knowledge on issues related to family violence to assist them to work more safely and effectively with women and children, as well as men who use violence. Family violence is everyone’s business and this workshop will help workers to improve safety for women and children experiencing family violence and work safely with men who use violence. The full day training will be held on the 1st July, 2014 at the Collingwood Library reading Room. Click here for full details and registration.