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Institutional Response to the Co-occurrence of IPV and Child Exposure Dr. Emily Rothman, ScD. NAME OF CLASS DATE CLASS #

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Presentation on theme: "Institutional Response to the Co-occurrence of IPV and Child Exposure Dr. Emily Rothman, ScD. NAME OF CLASS DATE CLASS #"— Presentation transcript:

1 Institutional Response to the Co-occurrence of IPV and Child Exposure Dr. Emily Rothman, ScD. NAME OF CLASS DATE CLASS #

2 Mass Department of Social Services (DSS) One of the first child welfare agencies to recognize that the safety of children living in homes where there is IPV and the safety of their battered mothers cannot be separated. Protocol developed in 1992 to serve as a guide to assist in investigation, risk assessment, and service planning.

3 DSS, continued Pioneered the placement of experienced domestic violence advocates as full time staff in local DSS offices in 1990 Started with AWAKE, an advocacy program at Boston Childrens Hospital Worked to prevent placement of children in DV cases by helping mothers

4 Coordinated Response IPV CPS

5 Mass. approach to coordinating services: Family Life Center Statewide, multi- disciplinary assessment and intensive family based services model Families referred to FLC workers are multi- problem FLC case workers had reduced case loads (4 instead of 20)

6 Mistrust has been common, non-collaboration the rule Department of Social Services Domestic Violence Movement

7 From the perspective of DSS… DSS looks out for the best interest of the child Interest in keeping the child safe If a woman is unable to protect herself from domestic violence, the DSS worker asks, How will she be able to care for and protect this child?

8 From the perspective of DSS… DV shelters are blindly loyal to women, unconcerned with children Even women who expose their children to serious harm Ignore and minimize the abuse perpetrated by women Underestimate the harm to children of repeated exposure to IPV

9 From the perspective of the IPV movement and DV shelters… DSS blames women for the violence men perpetrate against their children DSS holds men and women to different, gender biased standards of care for children CPS re-victimized women by removing their children

10 Children caught in the crossfire Children may distance themselves from mother Children may commit violence against their mother Both responses, if not understood, complicate the institutional response to IPV

11 Is the system set up to handle repeated exposure to violence? =iJfIZZqOnMM&has_verified=1

12 CPS investigation and assessment: sufficient risk? No No further CPS involvement YesOpen case CPS develops a service plan, family must complete service plan to reduce the risk of harm to child Risk abated?Yes Case closed NoCourt approval for out of home placement Permanent out of home placement Case plan for reunificationSuccess?YesReunification NoPermanent our of home placement

13 Started in 1992, counsels over 100 children and their families each year Main goals: (1) identifying and helping children age 8 or under who witness acts of significant violence to heal from trauma by providing developmentally appropriate counseling for them and for their families, and (2) enhancing the capacity of the network of caregivers of young children to identify and intervene on behalf of children who are exposed to violence.

14 CWVP Collaboration Social Workers Psychologists Early childhood specialists Consulting pediatricians Consulting attorney Department of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics

15 How does the CWVP project work? Child may be referred for an intake or a parent may call asking for an intake meeting An intake coordinator schedules a one-hour meeting with the parent and child After the meeting, the intake team determines whether the child is a good match for the program Not a mandated program, any child can receive an intake All services are free and confidential

16 Eligibility Parent must leave the domestic violence relationship before the child can receive services The child must be 8 years old or younger The child must have witnessed an act of significant violence If the childs primary reason for referral does not meet the criteria for their program they will help to refer the child to other programs.

17 Screening techniques Ages and Stages Developmental screening measure Also looking for signs of : PTSD Behavioral problems Response to social cues Speech patterns

18 Ages and Stages sample screening tool

19 CWVP uses Child Parent Psychotherapy

20 Challenges CWVP Faces During divorce and custody battles, abusive parent may find out that the child is in therapy – Creates a safety issue for abused parent and child There is sometimes a waiting list to get services – Especially during the summer when the program is short staffed (lack of social work and counseling interns)

21 Trainings Provided by CWVP Awareness and education on how violence impacts children Provided to school teachers and daycare centers – Mr. Rodgers Neighborhood Safe-Haven Trainings provided to law enforcement focus on sensitivity

22 Defending Childhood is an initiative of Attorney General Eric Holder that strives to harness resources from across the Department of Justice to: Prevent childrens exposure to violence; Mitigate the negative impact of childrens exposure to violence when it does occur, and; Develop knowledge and spread awareness about childrens exposure to violence.

23 Defending Childhood US Department of Justice recently released the first phase of $5.5 million dollars in grants to 8 communities focused on preventing and reducing the impact of childhood exposure to violence. Phase I Planning grants to 8 communities Phase II Implementation grants to 4 of the 8 communities

24 8 demonstration sites City of Boston ($160,000) City of Portland, Maine ($160,000) Chippewa Cree Tribe, Mont. ($153,210) City of Grand Forks, N.D. ($159,967) Cuyahoga County Board of Commissioners, Ohio ($157,873) Multnomah County Department of Human Services, Ore. ($159,349) Rosebud Sioux Tribe, S.D. ($159,534) Shelby County, Tenn. ($159,099).

25 National Survey of Childrens Exposure to Violence 60% of American Children exposed to violence, crime, abuse in homes, schools, and communities Almost 1 in 10 children saw one family member assault another family member, more than 25% had been exposed to family violence during their life

26 Recommendations for the future? Given what youve learned in class, your readings, and professional experiences, what recommendations would you make to improve the institutional response to children who witness intimate partner violence?

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