Page 465 - Week 02 - Wednesday, 23 March 2022

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To assess the level of risk for Alice and her children, the safety action pilot coordinated with all of the agencies who had contact with the perpetrator to ensure that information about his behaviour and the breaches of his bail conditions were visible to all of those involved in responding to him. The perpetrator response adviser also collated information about parole breaches that did not specifically relate to the abuse of Alice and shared it with ACT Corrective Services.

With all information held by different agencies shared and coordinated by the safety action pilot, it was clear that the perpetrator’s pattern of behaviour presented an escalated risk to Alice and her children. This resulted in a warrant being issued, rather than a breach action, and the perpetrator was remanded in custody. The work done by the perpetrator response adviser to coordinate with the agencies meant that the risk to Alice’s safety could be more accurately assessed and ACT Corrective Services was able to act on the relevant information, which included escalated risk to the safety of Alice and her children.

Alice was kept fully informed of the options available for agencies to intervene with her ex-partner. No interventions were initiated without her understanding and consent. The safety action pilot listened to Alice to understand what she had experienced in her relationship. Her knowledge of the perpetrator’s past behaviour was key to helping the agency understand what actions would be safe and what actions would be unsafe.

The safety action pilot worked with the Domestic Violence Crisis Service to provide Alice with crisis accommodation and support. This helped to build a strong relationship between Alice and DVCS, who continue to support her. The safety action pilot was able to map the behaviour of the perpetrator, identify the level of risk that this behaviour indicated and put in place actions to keep Alice and her children safe.

Through the safety action pilot’s coordinated response, Alice was able to access appropriate supports at appropriate times, guide the interventions impacting her and return home safely with her children. She felt heard, and saw that her needs and the needs of her children were prioritised. Alice’s story is one of many. The proactive monitoring of her ex-partner is just one example of the actions put in place through the safety action pilot and its partner agencies.

The safety action pilot has coordinated security upgrades for victim survivors’ homes, increased engagement with perpetrators by a range of agencies, provided critical insights into perpetrator behaviour for ACT police, ACT corrections and others and, most importantly, kept victim survivors informed and empowered about decisions and actions being taken to improve their safety.

The ACT government will continue to support new and innovative approaches to responding to domestic and family violence, including the Family Violence Safety Action Pilot—an example of a world’s best practice response operating right here in the ACT.

Madam Speaker, names were changed in this statement to protect privacy. I present the following paper:

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