Industry Plan: Whole of System Reform

Friday, 4 June 2021 at 10:38 am

MARAM and Information Sharing

MARAM and Information Sharing projects and initiatives are working to ensure that all services that come into contact with individuals and families experiencing family violence have a shared understanding of family violence, and a clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities under information sharing legislation. These will enhance the capability of broader community services sectors to keep victim survivors safe and hold perpetrators to account.

MARAM Phase 2 Implementation

The second phase of the MARAM roll out commenced in April this year for health and education workers whose work intersects with family violence.

Investment in MARAM and information sharing

The 2021–22 State Budget allocated $97 million over 4 years towards continued implementation of the MARAM and information sharing reforms. This provides funding to meet the continued demand for training, change management support and information sharing from government as part of implementing the Family Violence and Child Information Sharing Schemes and MARAM, including to universal health and education workforces recently brought into these reforms under Phase 2.

Information sharing in the CIP

The Central Information Point (CIP) is available to practitioners across The Orange Door and has recently been expanded to five Risk Assessment and Management Panels (RAMPs). The CIPs support risk assessment and safety planning for adults and children experiencing family violence. The CIP is assisting RAMP members to prioritise which cases progress to RAMPs and provides a more consolidated, comprehensive picture of the risk posed by the person using violence.

Supporting MARAM and Information Sharing alignment through Sector Grants Funding

The Victorian Government is progressing three inter-related reforms integral to reducing family violence and promoting the wellbeing and safety of children:

  • The Family Violence Multi-Agency Risk Assessment and Management Framework (MARAM)
  • The Family Violence Information Sharing Scheme (FVISS)
  • The Child Information Sharing Scheme (CISS)

The reforms have been rolled out in phases, with Phase 1 commencing 27 September 2018 and Phase 2 commencing on 19 April 2021. 

Since 2017, sector peaks and key representative bodies have been provided direct funding to develop and deliver tailored support initiatives for prescribed organisations under the three reforms. In 2020–21 over $1.5 million has been provided.

There are three distinct sector grants groups:

  1. Mainstream sector grants – provided to peak bodies representing core Phase 1 services across Victoria (such as Domestic Violence Victoria and No To Violence)
  2. Aboriginal sector grants – provided to selected Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations (ACCOs) to support the Aboriginal organisations that receive them to implement the reforms along with a focus on supporting other non-funded Aboriginal organisations with implementation
  3. Multicultural sector grants – provided to organisations specifically able to support migrant and refugee settlement services prescribed in Phase 2

Each sector grants group work on their own specific deliverables tailored to their sector, and also collaboratively with each other through regular Working Groups.

Sector grants are intentionally sector-facing and complement a range of whole of government and Department efforts to build workforce and staff capacity.

Specialist Family Violence Advisors

The Royal Commission into Family Violence found alcohol and other drug services and mental health services must play a more direct role in identifying and responding to family violence, and that capacity-building and closer ties with specialist family violence services were required.

As a result, Specialist Family Violence Advisor positions were developed. The Victorian Government funded the establishment of the Specialist Family Violence Advisor (SFVA) positions across 17 areas in 2017. The positions are auspiced by mental health and alcohol and drug service providers. SFVAs embed family violence expertise within the alcohol and other drug and mental health sectors, support continuous improvement and lead system and practice change and build sector capacity and capability to identify, assess and respond to family violence.