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Domestic abuse is recognised as a widespread problem in Bournemouth and causes huge amounts of suffering. There are many overlapping issues to domestic abuse, including links to mental health, physical and learning disabilities, anti-social behaviour, homelessness, drug and alcohol misuse and safeguarding. Our aim is to achieve zero tolerance of domestic abuse, increase reporting and reduce the impact of these issues.
Our strategy| sets out our priorities and action plan for the next three years. Our Priorities include:
Domestic abuse is defined as:
“any incident of threatening behaviour, violence or abuse (psychological, physical, sexual, financial or emotional) between adults, aged 18 or over, who are or have been intimate partners or family members, regardless of gender and sexuality” (family members are defined as mother, father, son, daughter, brother, sister and grandparents, whether directly related, in-laws or step-family).
ACPO/Home Office 2008
Domestic abuse is best understood as a pattern of behaviour designed to achieve power and control rather then a single incident or even a series of incidents.
Domestic Abuse is a significant local issue with up to 20,900 women and 13,270 men in Bournemouth experiencing domestic abuse in their lifetime.
The work that aims to tackle Domestic Abuse is delivered through the Bournemouth and Poole Domestic Violence Strategy group. A multi-agency partnership group that meets 4 times a year. The group has senior officers from the councils, health services, police as well as other agencies.
Although Domestic Violence incidents have been reducing in Bournemouth, the number of teenage domestic abuse incidents is a growing area nationally.
The Home Office have a new series of hard hitting TV adverts| as part of the This is Abuse campaign to raise awareness and challenge abusive behaviour in teen relationships.
Bournemouth Women’s Refuge 01202 547755
Poole Women’s Refuge 01202 748488
Bournemouth Domestic Violence Outreach Project 01202 581750
Poole Domestic Violence Outreach Project 01202 710777
Butterfly Foundation| 01202 463016
Citizen Advice Bureau| 01202 290967
Rape Crisis| 01202 547755
Relate| (Bournemouth & Poole) 01202 311231
Victim Support| 0845 38 99 528
Forced Marriages Unit| 0207 008151
Women’s Aid/Refuge| 24hr Helpline 0808 2000247
Support for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender (LGBT) Victims
Broken Rainbow| 0300 999 5428 or 08452 60 44 60
Mon 14.00-20.00; Wed 10.00-13.00; Thurs 14.00-20.00
Support for Male Victims
Respect| 0808 801 0327
Help for the Perpetrator
Respect| 0845 1228609
MARACs deal with the domestic violence victims identified as being at highest risk of serious harm.
The risk assessment process, MARAC procedures (including referral) and standards for operating MARAC meetings have been developed by Coordinated Action Against Domestic Abuse (CAADA) which is a national organisation supported by the Home Office.
Issues relating to children such as conflict over child contact, pregnancy and perception of harm to children are key indicators of risk in the CAADA risk assessment process. Thus a substantial number of victims who become MARAC cases have children (although many do not).
There are MARACs for Bournemouth, Dorset County and Poole. These meet every three weeks and are currently chaired by the Police. Agencies including children's and adults services, health, mental health, probation, local authority housing departments, drug and alcohol services, Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (CAFCASS) and specialist domestic violence service providers such as refuges and outreach projects all attend.
The MARAC is victim focussed and information is shared on victims identified as being at highest risk of harm.
The aim of the MARAC is to:
The responsibility to take appropriate action rests with the individual agencies - the MARAC is the process through which information is shared. Independent Domestic Violence Advisors (IDVAs) will represent the victim at the MARAC if the victim chooses to engage with the service. IDVA services are currently provided by Bournemouth Churches Housing Association (BCHA). The MARAC flowchart shows the stages in the MARAC process.
Risk assessment and how to refer to the MARAC
Any agency can refer a victim's case to the MARAC by following the procedure below:
If, on completion of the risk indicator checklist, the case does not meet the MARAC threshold consider other support you may need to give the victim and signpost to other specialist services available locally and nationally.
General information about the MARAC and risk assessment
CAADA is a national charity which aims to create a consistent, professional and effective response to high risk survivors of domestic violence. CAADA achieves this through the creation of a strong infrastructure for the domestic violence advocacy sector and other domestic violence professionals generally.
CAADA has produced a very good toolkit| which contains more detailed information on the MARAC.
For more information please visit the CAADA website|.
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