Children and families experiencing domestic violence Police and children’s social services’ responses
This research examined the process whereby police notify social services of domestic abuse incidents involving children and the subsequent service pathways followed by families brought to the attention of children’s social services in this way.
It also explored the other agencies which contributed to services for families experiencing domestic abuse and captured the views of young people, survivors and perpetrators on the services they experienced. This research was conducted by NSPCC and University of Central Lancashire.
Authors: Nicky Stanley, Pam Miller, Helen Richardson Foster and Gill Thomson
In England and Wales, the Adoption and Children Act 2002 amended the definition of significant harm provided by the Children Act 1989, adding a new category of “impairment suffered from seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another”.
Since domestic violence and children’s exposure to it represent a widespread social problem, this amendment has acted to draw a potentially large group of families within the remit of children’s social services. The growing mountain of police notifications to children’s social services of domestic violence incidents where children are involved and the pressures that this has created have been noted by a range of commentators in the UK, North America and Australia.
The notification system has emerged against what is acknowledged to be a background of fragmented services for children and families experiencing domestic violence, and represents an attempt to improve communication and coordination between universal and highly targeted services.
|The notification system: key messages||10|
|Chapter 1. Introduction||17|
|Chapter 2. Methodology||25|
|Chapter 3. Experiencing domestic violence and using services||38|
|Chapter 4. The domestic violence incidents||78|
|Chapter 5. Police intervention in incidents of domestic violence||105|
|Chapter 6. Children’s social services – receiving and responding to notifications||152|
|Chapter 7. Subsequent interventions and outcomes||182|
|Chapter 8. Inter-agency work from the perspective of children’s social services||212|
|Chapter 9. Innovative practice||237|
|Chapter 10. Conclusions and recommendations||247|
Other research and resources
Caring Dads: Safer Children: evaluation report
Caring Dads: Safer Children: learning from delivering a parenting programme
Evaluation of the Domestic Abuse, Recovering Together (DART) service
Domestic abuse: learning from case reviews
Domestic violence, child contact, post-separation violence
Partner exploitation and violence in teenage intimate relationships
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