What MARAM practice guidance is being developed?
Family Safety Victoria (FSV) is developing the MARAM practice guidance for:
- direct risk and wellbeing assessment of children and young people victim survivors
- identifying and responding to young people using family violence in the home and in intimate partner/dating relationships (recognising young people using violence often experience family violence risk).
This new practice guidance will support workforces prescribed under the MARAM Framework to respond to children and young people as victim survivors in their own right and support their wellbeing in the context of family violence. The guidance will support professionals to respond to young people using violence with a trauma and violence-informed, and age and developmental stage lens. The practice guides and tools are anticipated for release in 2023.
What has been achieved so far?
In 2022, 37 consultation sessions were held to support the development of the child and young person-focused MARAM practice guidance.
The Centre for Excellence in Child and Family Welfare, YSAS, Safe and Equal, RMIT University and Monash University were contracted to contribute to the development of the Practice Guides. Monash University, RMIT University and YSAS have now completed their work on the project.
In December 2022, RMIT published the Adolescents using Family Violence (AFV) MARAM Practice Guidance Project 2022: Review of the Evidence Base. The report, led by Elena Campbell, reviews the evidence base in relation to tools currently used to assess adolescent violence in the home (AVITH), adolescent intimate partner or ‘dating’ violence and harmful sexual behaviours.
In March 2023, Monash University published their report, Young people’s experiences of identity abuse in the context of family violence: A Victorian study. The report produces secondary data analysis of Victorian responses received to Monash University’s national survey on children and young people’s family violence experiences, use of violence, service, and support needs. The survey was completed in 2021 as part of a national study funded by ANROWS. The Victorian sample includes responses from 1,454 Victorian young people aged 16-20 years old. The report builds on the I Believe You report published by Monash University in February 2023, and supports further understanding of the voice and experience of children and young people experiencing family violence. The findings will directly inform the practice guidance and tools by incorporating young people’s experience of barriers to help seeking and service engagement, and experience of family violence that targets the young person’s identity and/or culture.
What is happening now?
FSV is undertaking a thematic analysis of the consultation feedback and working collaboratively with Safe and Equal to draft practice guidance across the 10 MARAM responsibilities. FSV is commencing targeted consultation focusing on:
- when it is safe, appropriate, and reasonable to engage directly with children and young people
- language and practice related to identifying use of harm as separate to use of family violence by young people
- approaches to accountability with young people using family violence.
What is planned next?
In June 2023, FSV engaged VACCA and Yoowinna Wurnalung Aboriginal Healing Service to contribute to the development of the child and young person-focused MARAM Practice Guides and tools. This partnership is designed to ensure that consultation and user testing is culturally safe and supported, and an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander lens is centred throughout the development process and end products.
In May 2023, FSV contracted Swinburne University and Safe and Equal to develop the MARAM child and young person family violence risk and wellbeing identification and assessment tools. Opportunities to be involved in the tool development process will be communicated in the coming months.
FSV will be testing draft material in consultation with workforces in 2023. If you would like to be involved in consultation, please contact email@example.com.
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