Tools for professionals
This page contains links to further information on a range of topics designed to help professionals when supporting victims of domestic abuse.
Guidance on the risk assessment process (DASH) with links to further information.
Here are some top tips for victims and professionals when it comes to safety planning.
More information coming soon
Information on housing options for those fleeing domestic abuse.
The Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme allows people to share potential concerns of abuse with the police for investigation.
Information and guidance on accessing refuges and what to expect.
Further resources and tools
Risk assessment tools
Generic and young person forms/information
- SafeLives DASH Risk Assessment form – links to current document on their website with quick start guidance
- SafeLives Young person’s DASH Risk Assessment with further information included
- Other languages for DASH are available on the SafeLives website
- An introduction to risk identification in domestic abuse cases – SafeLives
- DASH website – Laura Richards
Stalking (S-DASH) and so-called ‘honour’ based abuse (HB-DASH) cases
- Stalking and harassment DASH (S-DASH) – explanatory notes
- S-DASH- additional questions for stalking and harassment
- HB-DASH – additional questions for honour-based abuse cases
Tools for victims
Risk assessment for children and young people
- Young person’s DASH risk assessment with practice guidance from SafeLives. This Risk Identification Checklist is for the identification of high-risk cases of domestic abuse, stalking and ‘honour’-based violence for young people (13-17). Please ensure you read the guidance thoroughly before use.
- Barnardos Domestic Violence Risk Identification Matrix contains risk factors, vulnerabilities and protective factors to help practitioners assess the level of risk a child is at.
A Sanctuary Scheme involves a process known as target hardening and aims to reduce homelessness by enabling victims (where safe and appropriate) to stay in their own homes. Many victims do not want to leave their homes or the area where they live, as their support networks are there and their children are settled. The scheme aims to improve security by replacing locks, installing window locks and alarms and putting in measures to reduce the risk of fires.
There is national guidance for Local Authorities on what they should include in a target hardening policy: Practice Guide for Agencies Developing and Delivering Sanctuary Schemes
The scheme works slightly differently in each area and may involve resources from district councils. This service is not restricted to those in rented or local authority housing but can also be accessed if the victim owns their own home.
To access the service, please contact your local Domestic Abuse helpline or council.
Help for perpetrators
There are two types of domestic violence perpetrator programmes in the UK — criminal justice programmes and voluntary community-based programmes.
Criminal justice-based programmes are usually run by probation or prison staff, and only take referrals from the criminal courts as part of a sentence for a conviction for a violent or abusive incident.
Voluntary community-based programmes are usually run by a voluntary sector organisation or part of a voluntary/statutory sector partnership and can take self-referrals as well as referrals from Children’s Services, the family courts and a range of other services. In order to make sure that the programme is run as safely as possible and with the maximum possible chance of supporting change, a risk assessment and management plan will be undertaken.
Both types of programmes will also have links to safety and/or support services for partners and ex-partners of programme participants.
Anger management programmes, educational programmes for men, awareness-raising short courses and couples counselling services are NOT domestic violence perpetrator programmes as they do not include the full range of services necessary to provide a safe and meaningful opportunity for domestic violence perpetrators to stop being violent. For anger management programmes this is primarily because they are about managing anger, not stopping violence and promoting safety. They do not have contact with partners/ex-partners and is therefore not recognised as being a safe service for perpetrators. Anger management can significantly increase the risk for victims.
Couples counselling alone, whilst it can and often does form a useful addition after successful behaviour change in a perpetrator programme, does not constitute a perpetrator programme, primarily because couples counselling will not be safe and effective for victims to participate in freely, a requirement for couples counselling to be meaningful.
- Domestic Violence Perpetrators: Identifying Needs to Inform Early Intervention – University of Bristol and the Home Office, 2006
- Domestic violence offenders: characteristics and offending related needs – Home Office, 2003
- Domestic violence: who are the victims and who are the perpetrators? – Calvin Bell, 2001
- For men involved in domestic violence – Ian Banks, 2008
We need your help to continue our work reducing the risk of domestic abuse. Find out more about how you can get involved!