Scope of Strengthening the Foundations

In line with Building from Strength, Strengthening the Foundations has a broad scope across the specialist family violence and primary prevention, community services, health, justice, and education and training sectors.

This plan uses the four-tier workforce classification adopted in Building from Strength1 (Figure 1, Workforce tiers for family violence response below). The four tiers distinguish between different roles in family violence response across these sectors, for both victim survivors of family violence and perpetrators. The Royal Commission noted that these tiers provide ‘a good starting point for thinking about the competencies each part of the system needs to possess’. The tiers, while not exhaustive, are a useful demonstration of how different workforces on a spectrum from specialist to universal services, have a distinct and particular role to play in responding to family violence.

Tier 1: Specialist family violence and sexual assault practioners. Tier 2: Workers in core support or intervention agencies. Tier 3: Workers in mainstream services and non-family violence specific agencies. Tier 4: Workers in universal services and organisations

The primary prevention sector spans various workforces and is made up of specialist primary prevention practitioners and individuals who contribute to primary prevention as part of their broader role. These are described below in Figure 2: Primary prevention workforces. This includes:

Prevention contributors

Prevention contributors have core duties and responsibilities that do not focus on prevention of family violence and violence against women, but they play a role in primary prevention initiatives and policies within diverse sectors across a range of workforces.

Primary prevention practitioners

Primary Prevention practitioners specialise in designing, implementing and monitoring prevention of family violence and violence against women initiatives and policy within and across settings. Primary Prevention practitioners may work in dedicated primary prevention or gender equity agencies or organisations but, for the most part, work within a range of settings including local government, community health, Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations and Women's Health Organsations.

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Parts of this plan focus specifically on the specialist family violence response and prevention practitioner workforces and sectors. These workforces may be referred to collectively as ‘specialist workforces’ or ‘specialist sectors’ but this plan recognises that they each have unique characteristics and workforce needs, and initiatives are targeted and tailored accordingly. Specialist practitioners may work in specialist organisations or may be embedded in tier 2-4 settings. Prevention initiatives in this Plan particularly focus on the prevention practitioner workforce. In the response space ‘specialist workforces’ encompasses the workforces that work with victim survivors and the workforces that work with perpetrators.

Other parts of this plan have a broader focus. Tiers 2-4 workforces, and prevention contributors, are referred to collectively as ‘non-specialist workforces’. This terminology indicates that these workforces do not specialise in family violence response or prevention, however can be critical first responders (such as police), early identifiers (such as teachers) or provide services which are critical to ensuring safety and recovery (such as lawyers or child and family services workers). This plan recognises that these workforces are specialist in their own contexts, and initiatives in this plan are designed to build family violence capability for workers to prevent and respond to family violence within that context.

A comprehensive glossary can be found at the end of this plan.

1 As originally developed by the Domestic Violence Resource Centre Victoria.