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Risk assessment and management

Responsible government

  • Victoria

Fourth Action Plan actions

  • Improve support and service system responses
    • 17 Collaborate across services, sectors and workforces to ensure responses to women affected by domestic, family and sexual violence are coordinated, meet women’s needs, avoid women having to retell their story and promote their recovery.

What are we doing?

The Family Violence Multi Agency Risk Assessment and Management Framework (MARAM) aims to ensure professionals and services across the system have a shared understanding of family violence, and provide consistent and collaborative practice by:

  • increasing the safety of victim survivors through strengthened risk identification and management, informed by collaborative practice, information sharing and secondary consultation
  • recognising the diverse experiences and needs of victim survivors, including people from Aboriginal and diverse communities and at-risk age cohorts.
  • A key aspect of MARAM is information sharing. Information sharing in Victoria, including access to information by victim survivors, is being improved through the Family Violence Information Sharing (FVIS) Scheme, enabling prescribed organisations to share relevant information to assess and manage family violence risk
  • The Victorian Government provided $89.5 million in 2017–18 for information sharing, which includes implementation of the FVIS, the Child Information Sharing Scheme (CIS), and the Central Information Point (CIP)
  • The Victorian Government will provide $30 million over two years (2018–20) for developing and implementing MARAM.

What have we achieved so far?

  • The MARAM has been developed and the first phase of organisations have been prescribed, requiring them to align their policies, practices, procedures and tools to MARAM. This includes 35,000 professionals in 855 organisations across Victoria
  • Implementation of the MARAM Framework has been aligned with the commencement of the CIS and Phase One of the FVIS (following an initial tranche of organisations prescribed to FVIS in February 2018)
  • Evidence gathered to date indicates an increase in information sharing across the family violence service system
  • Since October 2018 over 4,650 workers have received training in FVIS
  • Over 1,000 workers have received training in MARAM leading alignment and comprehensive training for experienced practitioners
  • Victim survivor focused operational practice guidance was released in July 2019
  • A new online system to host the assessment tools has progressively been rolled out to Orange Door services and select pilot sites.

What is next?

  • Information on MARAM alignment, implementation and operation during 2018–19 will be captured in the first annual report to Victorian Parliament due to be tabled in early 2020, as required under the Family Violence Protection Act (2008) (FVPA)
  • A second phase of organisations including the health and education sectors are anticipated to be prescribed under MARAM, FVIS and CIS. Public consultation will occur in November 2019 regarding the second phase of workforces. It is expected that at least 350,000 additional professionals will be prescribed in Phase Two.
  • A suite of perpetrator focused tools and practice guidance is being developed
  • FSV will continue to develop resources including developing organisational guidance to support leaders to implement practice changes for their workforce
  • A new online system to host the assessment tools knowns as Tools for Risk Assessment and Management (TRAM) will be progressively rolled out to a broader group of organisations and services.

What difference will we make?

This initiative will contribute to the National Outcomes that services meet the needs of women and their children experiencing violence and that perpetrators stop their violence and are held to account.

The Victorian Family Violence Outcomes Framework was published in Ending Family Violence: Victoria’s Plan for Change, which outlined Victoria’s priorities in preventing and responding to family violence, why they matter, and what constitutes success. The Victorian Family Violence Outcomes Framework is a whole of Government framework and is intended to ensure Victorian family violence reform efforts are focused on the actions that make a difference. The Victorian Government is progressing development of the framework, including through indicators and measures. In time, measurement and monitoring of Victorian family violence outcomes may also support reporting for the National Plan.

  • The MARAM will contribute to all domains and outcomes within the Family Violence Outcomes Framework, including the following outcomes that are summarised below:
Domain Outcomes
Victim survivors, vulnerable children and families are safe and supported to recover and thrive Early intervention prevents escalation

Families are safe and strong

Victim survivors are safe

Victim survivors are heard and in control

Perpetrators are held to account, engaged and connected Early intervention prevents escalation

Perpetrators are accountable for their behaviour

Perpetrators are in view

Preventing and responding to family violence is systemic and enduring Initiatives to respond to family violence are person-centred

The system is united, integrated and joined-up

  • The MARAM legislation requires review of the implementation of the Framework within five years, and ongoing review of the evidence base every five years to ensure MARAM maintains currency over time.
  • FSV has engaged consultants to develop a Monitoring and Evaluation Framework for the MARAM reforms and a process evaluation of early implementation efforts.
  • The FVIS Scheme legislation requires an independent review two years post implementation. This review is currently being conducted. The review will consider the process of implementation of the FVIS Scheme, as well as the scheme’s impact on levels of information sharing and the safety of victim survivors. The review will consider any adverse impacts of the scheme, to assist continued improvement and to guide implementation. Data used by the review will include instances of information sharing, a panel survey of practitioners, focus groups and interviews with practitioners and victim survivors.
  • A further review five years post implementation is also required by the FVIS legislation (i.e. by 2023).

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