Effects of second responder programs on repeat incidents of family abuse

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URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10900/64667
Dokumentart: Article
Date: 2008-10
Source: Campbell Systematic Reviews, 15, 2008
Language: English
Faculty: Kriminologisches Repository
Kriminologisches Repository
Department: Kriminologie
DDC Classifikation: 360 - Social problems and services; associations
Keywords: Häusliche Gewalt , Prävention
Other Keywords:
family abuse
second responder programs
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Background: Second responder programs are based on the premises that family violence often recurs and that victims are likely to be especially receptive to crime prevention opportunities immediately following victimization. A team usually consisting of a police officer and a victim advocate follow-up on the initial police response to a family violence complaint, provides the victim with information on services and legal options and may warn those perpetrators present at the follow-up of the legal consequences of continued abuse. The purpose of the intervention is to reduce the likelihood of a new offense by helping victims to understand the cyclical nature of family violence, develop a safety plan, obtain a restraining order, increase their knowledge about legal rights and options, and provide shelter placement or other relocation assistance. A secondary aim of the intervention with victims may be to establish greater independence for victims through counseling, job training, public assistance, or other social service referrals. The intervention has spread widely, with support from the U.S. Department of Justice. Objectives: To assess the effect of second responder programs on repeat incidents of family violence. Main results: The second response intervention increased slightly the odds that a household would report another family violence incident to the police. No effect of the intervention was found on reports of new abuse based on victim surveys. Conclusions: The results suggest that the second response intervention does not affect the likelihood of new incidents of family violence. However, the intervention slightly increases victims’ willingness to report incidents to the police, possibly as a result of greater confidence in the police.

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