Court-mandated interventions for individuals convicted of domestic violence

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Dokumentart: Article
Date: 2008-08
Source: Campbell Systematic Reviews, 12, 2008
Language: English
Faculty: Kriminologisches Repository
Kriminologisches Repository
Department: Kriminologie
DDC Classifikation: 360 - Social problems and services; associations
Keywords: Häusliche Gewalt , Gewalt gegen Frauen , Diversion , Intervention , Prävention
Other Keywords:
domestic violence
batterer intervention program
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Background: Survey research and analysis of police records, hospital emergency rooms and women’s shelters have clearly established the severity of the domestic violence problem and the need to find programs to address this issue. Today, court-mandated batterer intervention programs (BIPs) are being implemented throughout the United States as one of the leading methods to address this problem. These programs emerged from the women’s shelter movement and therefore contained a strong feminist orientation. They developed as group-based programs, typically using psychoeductional methods. Their aim was to get men to take responsibility for their sexist beliefs and stop abusing their partners by teaching them alternative responses for handling their anger. Objectives: The aim of this systematic review is to assess the effects of post-arrest courtmandated interventions (including pre-trial diversion programs) for domestic violence offenders that target, in part or exclusively, batterers with the aim of reducing their future likelihood of re-assaulting above and beyond what would have been expected by routine legal procedures. Search Strategies: We searched numerous computerized databases and websites, bibliographies of published reviews of related literature and scrutiny of annotated bibliographies of related literature. Our goal was to identify all published and unpublished literature that met our selection criteria. Selection Criteria: We included experimental or rigorous quasi-experimental evaluations of court-mandated batterer intervention programs that measured official or victim reports of future domestic violent behavior. Rigorous quasi-experimental designs were defined as those that either used matching or statistical controls to improve the comparability of the groups. Given their importance in the literature, we also included rigorous quasi-experimental designs that used a treatment drop-out comparison. Data Collection and Analysis: We coded characteristics of the treatment, sample, outcomes, and research methods. Findings were extracted in the form of an effect size and effect sizes were analyzed using the inverse-variance method. Official report and victim report outcomes were analyzed separately as were the different design types (i.e,, random, quasi-experimental with a no treatment comparison, and quasi-experimental with a treatment dropout comparison). Main Results: The mean effect for official reports of domestic violence from experimental studies showed modest benefit whereas the mean effect for victim reported outcomes was zero. Quasi-experimental studies using a no-treatment comparison had inconsistent findings indicating an overall small harmful effect. In contrast, quasiexperimental studies using a treatment dropout design showed a large, positive mean effect on domestic violence outcomes. The latter studies suffer, we believe, from selection bias. Reviewer's Conclusions: The findings, we believe, raise doubts about the effectiveness of court-mandated batterer intervention programs in reducing re-assault among men convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence.

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