Our previous research into serial domestic abuse indicated the importance of shared multi-agency understanding when it comes to identification of and responses to the most serious forms of domestic abuse. Our last report, published in November 2014, questioned the prevailing assumption that serial abusers should be the focus of enhanced targeting and intervention, and instead recommended developing perpetrator-focussed responses that take into account serial alongside repeat and high-risk offending. Specifically, we recommended the development of a consistent definition and monitoring/flagging process for priority perpetrators. Informed by extensive experience and research indicating the efficacy of multi-agency responses to domestic abuse, we embarked on a project to create a Priority Perpetrator Identification Tool (PPIT), incorporating serial, repeat and high-risk offending into a single tool with input and agreement across relevant agencies (e.g., Police, Criminal Justice and Third Sector). The intention is for the PPIT to complement and draw upon other existing tools (e.g., DASH for victims, OASys and SARA for perpetrators) so that agencies can reliably identify those individuals whose offending behaviour requires priority action. The development of this tool represents the first stage of establishing a more robust identification and referral pathway for priority domestic abuse perpetrators in Wales. This report documents the development and consultation process which was undertaken January-March of this year to create the PPIT. Findings Based on the evidence collected from the consultation (n=15 participants in the stage one stakeholder event and n=25 participants in the stage two online survey), there appears to be a high level of support amongst both operational and strategic agency representatives (from a range of agencies in Wales and elsewhere in the UK), for a tool to assist with the identification of those committing the most serious and harmful forms of domestic abuse. It is noteworthy that an overwhelming majority of respondents felt that the ten items in the PPIT captured the most important aspects to consider, and the brief guidance accompanying the tool was largely fit-for-purpose. Despite the complexities of what is involved, the majority view is favourable to implementing the PPIT. Implications The PPIT is envisioned as an instrument to be used to trigger an intervention, rather than an intervention itself, and aims to support the identification of a commonly recognised priority cohort of individuals which will be the focus of the collective efforts all partners. Concept and planning work is already underway to address the ‘what comes next’ question raised by many of those involved in the consultation process. To maximise its efficacy and potential to be a reliable and useful tool for frontline use across a range of agencies, we recommend further testing of the PPIT. Further research is needed to assess the range of policy and practice implications likely to result from the implementation of the PPIT.
|Place of Publication||Cardiff|
|Publication status||Published - Apr 2015|