A question of commitment – improving practitioner responses to domestic and sexual violence, problematic substance use and mental ill-health

Holly, Jennifer and Horvath, Miranda A. H. ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4363-4575 (2012) A question of commitment – improving practitioner responses to domestic and sexual violence, problematic substance use and mental ill-health. Advances in Dual Diagnosis, 5 (2) . pp. 59-67. ISSN 1757-0972 [Article] (doi:10.1108/17570971211241912)

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Purpose – AVA (Against Violence & Abuse) is funded by the Department of Health to deliver the Stella Project Mental Health Initiative. This project aims to develop and implement models of good practice for responding to survivors and perpetrators of abuse who also have a dual diagnosis. Marking the project's halfway point, this article aims to review what is already understood to be best practice in this area, to present the initial learning from the project evaluation, and to consider the most effective ways of promoting and enabling behaviour change among practitioners.

Design/methodology/approach – The research design for the evaluation is a mixed methods evaluation, drawing on both prospective and retrospective research techniques. The design was developed within an action research framework.

Findings – In line with other research, levels of routine enquiry or enquiry about experiences of violence were low amongst staff from all organisations participating in the project. In comparison staff seem somewhat more likely to enquire about substance misuse and mental health issues. Wide variation in attendance at training was found with a complex relationship between training and confidence emerging.

Originality/value – This paper adds to the growing evidence base to suggest that a lot more training, organisational support and research is needed to ensure that professionals who have contact with women who have experienced abuse, have mental health or substance use problems are asking their clients about all three issues, making appropriate referrals and ensuring victims with complex needs having access to protection and support.

Item Type: Article
Keywords (uncontrolled): Best practice, Domestic violence, Drug addiction, Mental health, Mental health services, Sexual violence, Substance use, United Kingdom
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology
A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology > Forensic Psychology Research Group
A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology > Qualitative and Mixed Methods Research group
Item ID: 9582
Notes on copyright: Attached is an author accepted manuscript version of an article; made available in this repository in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy. The published version appears in Advances in Dual Diagnosis and is available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/17570971211241912
Useful Links:
Depositing User: Miranda Horvath
Date Deposited: 22 Nov 2012 06:03
Last Modified: 08 Jun 2022 17:14
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/9582

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