MARAM Resources, Training & Implementation Update

MARAM Resources, Training & Implementation Update

Tuesday 7 July 2020

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In Victoria, the Family Violence Multi-Agency Risk Assessment and Management (MARAM) framework is used to ensure all services are effectively, collaboratively and consistently responding to family violence risk.

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has impacted MARAM reforms on multiple fronts – from what needs to be considered during risk assessments and safety planning, to the delivery of MARAM training, and the speed at which MARAM reforms are being rolled out.

To help you wrap your head around everything you need to know, we have put together a concise summary of key MARAM-related developments (as of July 7th 2020) below.

Resources to support MARAM risk assessment and management

Victim survivors are facing increased family violence risk and barriers to support during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Recognising this, Family Safety Victoria (FSV) have developed a series of “MARAM Practice Note” resources. These outline the minimum steps professionals – across men’s behaviour change, specialist family violence, key support agencies, and mainstream and universal services – must take when responding to family violence during the pandemic.

They can be downloaded via The Lookout’s MARAM practice notes page.

MARAM training for experienced family violence practitioners

All specialist family violence professionals in Victoria must complete MARAM training.

The Domestic Violence Resource Centre Victoria has recently begun delivering its MARAM Renewing Practice training online. This training is suitable for experienced family violence specialists who have extensive experience and have previously completed specialist CRAF training. You can learn more and sign up to this training via DVRCV’s training website.

MARAM training for non-specialist services

The Centre for Excellence in Child and Family Welfare has also started delivering online MARAM training to select allied workforces. These include:

  • MARAM Brief & Intermediate level training for Child FIRST, family services, alcohol and other drug, homelessness and mental health workers.
  • MARAM Screening & Identification level training for care services.
  • MARAM Screening & Identification training for maternal child health workers.

You can find out more about this training and whether it’s relevant to you here.

Information sharing entities database

Information sharing is one way in which services can work together to keep victim survivors safe and hold perpetrators accountable under the MARAM Framework.

FSV have developed a database that compiles a list of organisations prescribed under the Family Violence Information Sharing Scheme and Child Information Sharing Scheme.

The database also tells you what kind of information sharing entity (ISE) they are, including whether they are risk assessment entity or a central contact point for information requests.  The database will be updated in regular intervals but is not a live list.

Remember: as per the Ministerial Guidelines, if you do not have an existing relationship with someone requesting information,  continue to verify their identity before sharing anything with them (e.g. by asking them to send an email from their official work account or by calling their switchboard at their organisation).

If an organisation’s contact information isn’t stored in the database, refer to the organisation’s website for public contact details.

If you are not sure if you or another organisation is prescribed, call the Information Sharing and MARAM Enquiry Line 1800 549 646 or email

Resources to support MARAM alignment

Prescribed organisations and services are required to ensure their policies, procedures, practice guidance and tools are aligned with the MARAM framework.

Recognising the diverse obstacles organisations are facing at the moment, FSV have developed a factsheet for organisational leaders on how to do MARAM alignment as part of business continuity planning in the COVID-19 context. The factsheet is available here.

An update on reform implementation

The MARAM Framework and Information Sharing Schemes are being rolled out in gradual phases.

FSV has recently announced that due to COVID-19, phase two of implementation will be delayed until the first half of 2021. This next phase will see universal workforces – such as hospitals and health and education workforces – prescribed under the framework.

To stay up to date with the progress of the reform implementation, sign up to FSV’s e-newsletter.

For more information on MARAM developments, plus access to MARAM tools and resources, go to the Victorian Government’s website.

Page last updated Tuesday, July 7 2020


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Funding to Better Equip GPs to Respond to Family Violence

Funding to Better Equip GPs to Respond to Family Violence

Monday, 6 July 2020

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The Federal Government has announced $300,000 in funding to update clinical guidelines to help general practitioners (GPs) better respond to family violence.

Abuse and violence: Working with our patients in general practice (the Whitebook) is a manual resource designed to guide doctors and medical experts to identify family violence and support patients experiencing abuse.

Last reviewed in 2014, the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) will use the funding to update the Whitebook and ensure medical practitioners across the country have current, tailored and evidence-informed advice at their disposal.

The initiative is part of the a broader $9.6 million government commitment, announced in the Federal Government’s 2019–20 Budget, to build the capability of more healthcare professionals to better recognise and respond to patients experiencing abuse.

Closer to home: Royal Commission Implementation 

After family and friends, it is GPs and other primary healthcare providers who people experiencing family violence most often turn to for help and support.

Research has found that approximately one quarter of women seeking help in relation to their abuse confide initially in a healthcare professional. It’s been estimated that every week a GP sees up to five women who have been abused by their partners, though the GP may not be aware of this abuse.

The powerful role GPs have to play in responding to family violence was captured by several recommendations that came out of Victoria’s Royal Commission into Family Violence.

These included creating a database of health professionals with family violence expertise, making family violence training a mandatory requirement for all GPs, and developing a family violence learning agenda for current and future medical practitioners.

All of these recommendations have either been implemented or are currently in progress.

GP responses even more crucial during COVID-19

According to RACGP Chair, Dr Charlotte Hespe, the Federal Government’s funding announcement could not have come at a more pressing time given the detrimental impacts of COVID-19 on the prevalence and severity of family violence in our communities.

“It is a sad and unfortunate reality that the COVID-19 pandemic will have increased cases of family and domestic abuse and violence in Australia.”

“We must do all we can to ensure GPs are equipped with the skills and resources to help people experiencing abuse and violence and ensure they get the support they need,” she added.

Since the funding announcement, the RACGP has released a COVID-19 and family violence support fact sheetoutlining the indicators of family violence all general practitioners should be looking out for, plus practical advice on how to safely consult with patients over the phone or during video consultations.

The College has also released a self-paced professional development program for GPs on responding to family violence, which can be accessed via their website. 

If you are a GP looking to discuss a patient’s circumstances with a specialist family violence professional, you can contact 1800 RESPECT 24/7 on 1800737732 for guidance and support.

Page last updated Monday, July 6 2020


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