The use of restorative work in CPV: where it diverges with IPV

The recent publication of the paper, Under the Radar: The Widespread use of ‘Out of Court Resolutions’ in Policing Domestic Violence and Abuse in the United Kingdom, by Westmarland, Johnson and McGlynn,  once again draws attention to the differences between adult perpetrated DVA and child to parent violence.

While much comment is made about the similarities – in how it feels to parents particularly, the apparent gendered nature, clear links to previous experience of domestic violence within the family, and to the adaptation of the Duluth wheel in many programmes addressing CPV; the active promotion of the use of elements of restorative practice is where the two clearly diverge. (Or so we thought – the report suggests that RP elements are more widespread in adult DV work than expected.)

I have posted about comparisons with IPV and about the use of restorative practice in CPV in the past (herehere and here for instance), and of course the book by Routt and Anderson, Adolescent Violence in the Home: Restorative Approaches to Building Healthy, Respectful Family Relationships, considers the way in which an important element of work with young people is to maintain them within the family if possible. The Step Up project in Seattle was designed specifically as a diversionary measure, and so it is interesting to compare the way we understand and respond to this issue at different points in the lifecycle.

Work with young people is founded on an understanding of their vulnerability, the often past existence of trauma, the plasticity of their thinking at this stage in their life, and the supportive elements of being part of a family unit in terms of changing behaviour and healing relationships. Which for me raises interesting questions about when these issues cease to be pertinent – what age is the cut off? We know that many young people can be helped to change their behaviour and to remain within the family unit; but we also know that some will continue to abuse family members and will go on to be abusive to partners. Are we looking at two completely different issues or does one morph into the other, or is there an overlap?

I welcome comments from those engaged in work in the field.

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Safeguarding Adolescents in London: survey for professionals

I am very happy to support the dissemination of this survey from the London Safeguarding Adolescents Steering Group, developed to inform improvements to the safeguarding of young people aged 10 – 17. If you are engaged in work with young people in London, please do read this letter and complete the survey.

Dear all

Safeguarding Adolescents in London – survey for professionals

In 2016 the London Assistant Directors Network, Metropolitan Police Service, Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime, London Councils, NHS England (London Region), the London Heads of Community Safety, London Youth and a range of other associations joined together to form the London Safeguarding Adolescents Steering Group (LSASG). The group formed in response to evidence being generated by local site work and case reviews conducted by University of Bedfordshire and the MsUnderstood partnership which has suggested the need for improvements to London’s approach to safeguarding young people aged 10-17.

The group is committed to developing a coherent London policy framework for supporting local practice, including the development of a supplementary chapter in the London Child Protection Procedures on Safeguarding Adolescents. In order to draft the chapter the LSASG is surveying London practitioners for their views.

  • Do you feel as though you understand safeguarding in the context of keeping adolescents safe equal to, or greater than, safeguarding younger children
  • What are your experiences of trying to keep young people safe in London?
  • What are some examples of good practice when keeping adolescents?
  • Are there particular challenges you have experienced when trying to safeguard adolescents?
  • Where do you need further resources, guidance and support – and what might this look like?

You can complete the survey by clicking on this link

Safeguarding Adolescents in London – survey for professionals

This survey will be open for three weeks (closing on Friday 31st March 2017) and we encourage responses from professionals involved in, or with an interest in, approaches to safeguarding young people in London across a range of sectors and agencies. Responses will be used to inform a draft chapter on safeguarding adolescents that will be issued for public consultation in the Autumn.

Thank you

 

Dr Lucie Shuker – On behalf of Dr Carlene Firmin

Senior Research Fellow

The International Centre: Researching  Child Sexual Exploitation, Violence and Trafficking,

University of Bedfordshire.

Tel: 01582 743928 / 07525 616644

Web: www.beds.ac.uk/ic

Blog: www.uniofbedscse.com

Twitter: @uniofbedsCSE

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Domestic violence isn’t always between adult partners

If you’ve not come across child to parent violence before; if you don’t know anyone affected; it’s easy to misread the signs. Sadly, we have come to accept that adults can experience intimate partner violence. Folk may not all fully understand what is going on and why, but they get that it happens. So when you hear shouting and screaming noises through the wall from the neighbours, or when you see bruises, it would be natural to draw that conclusion.

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Troubled families / Child to parent violence: some background thinking

Bear with me as I wander around thinking out loud here.

I recently attended the Centre for Crime and Justice StudiesTroubled Families conference, in London.

Over the course of the day a number of eminent academics from across the fields of history, social policy, social work, sociology, economics, criminology and law presented papers on the origins, evaluation and policy context of the Troubled Families Programme. While the focus of the day was on the way that the Tory government had defined and presented a particular problem; and then gone on to provide a solution to it, regardless of evidence in either case, there was inevitably much to ponder in a more general sense, and much specifically relevant to work with child to parent violence. Continue reading

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A National Survey for Adoptive Parents: The Reality of Physical Restraint

This is an issue that has raised its head a lot recently in connection with child to parent violence, and about which The Open Nest charity has already developed significant resources. This fact finding survey is circulated for all adoptive parents in Britain and closes at the end of February.

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The survey is now closed and I have been asked by the organisers to pass on thanks to all who took part: “Many thanks to everyone who supported and/or completed the recent restraint survey examining the experience of adoptive parents. The findings will be published once collated, and I will make contact with those who expressed a willingness to participate in follow up interviews in due course” – Lee Hollins PGCert Health Research, BSc (Hons)

 

 

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Call to Action – Knowledge Inquiry: Children who come into the care system under a voluntary arrangement

I have blogged in the past about the use of section 20 of the Children Act 1989 with families experiencing violence and abuse from their children. I know that this is an area of practice that is fraught with disagreement and potential misuse; and it has been the subject of legal discussion too of late (see here for example).

Your Family, Your Voice, an alliance of families and practitioners that has been developed by Family Rights Group to counter the stigma and negative presumptions about families whose children are subject to or at risk of state intervention, have launched an inquiry into the powers and duties which exist under section 20. You will find information about the aims of the inquiry, what form it will take, an invitation to take part – including information about focus groups – and full briefing notes on the NIROP pages linked below. Please do check it out, and contribute to the inquiry if you are affected by any of the issues.

Source: Call to Action – Knowledge Inquiry: Children who come into the care system under a voluntary arrangement

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Safe Lives Spotlight on Young People

The domestic violence and abuse charity, Safe Lives, have just launched their most recent Spotlight feature, which is about young people this time round, and which runs through to the end of March.

Safe Lives Research findings: 

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In the third of our Spotlights series (end of Jan – end of March), we’ll be focusing on the experiences of young people (13 to 17 years) affected by domestic abuse and the professionals who support them. We’ll be answering questions such as: how can professionals adapt to meet the needs of young people? How does a young person’s experience of domestic abuse differ to an adult’s? What are the best ways to support young people who harm without criminalising them?

Through a combination of blogs, short films and podcasts, we’ll be posting the latest research, practical resources for professionals, practitioner advice/guidance and talking to young people about their experiences. Be part of the conversation through our webinar on 3rd March from 1-2pm, and the Twitter Q&A on 17th March from 1-2pm – use the hashtag #SafeYoungLives.

There will be new content uploaded on the Safe Lives website each week, including discussions about violence and abuse from young people towards their parents and carers, so keep checking regularly. I will tweet further links as they go live!

 

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