Informed by the expertise of specialist family violence sector, the Family Violence Case Management Program Requirements (the Requirements) establish for the first time a set of consistent, statewide expectations for specialist family violence services in the delivery of case management for adult and child victim survivors.
Developed by Family Safety Victoria in collaboration with Safe and Equal, the Requirements build on previous work undertaken with the sector to develop comprehensive case management guidance. They detail the critical roles, responsibilities and functions of case management services, describe the elements of quality service delivery and outline how different parts of the service system work together.
The purpose underpinning the Requirements is the provision of consistent, coordinated, timely and flexible case management support to victim survivors that responds to their safety and other support needs. The Requirements describe ‘what’ agencies need to do to ensure quality case management service delivery. They are aligned with the Code of Practice for Specialist Family Violence Services (which describes the ‘why’) and MARAM Framework and Information Sharing Schemes (which describes the ‘how’).
Case management undertaken by specialist family violence services incorporates a range of practices including but not limited to screening, identification and triage, risk assessment, risk management, safety planning, outreach, advocacy, psycho-social needs assessment, case planning, secondary consultation, co-case management, coordination of services, referrals, exit planning and case closure.
The case management program requirements have been structured around three core inter-related themes or components that respond to victim survivors’ risk, needs and individual circumstances, being:
- Crisis response
- Brief non-crisis response
- Intermediate response, and
- Long/intensive response
- Screening, identification and triage
- Risk assessment,
- Case planning and risk management, and
- Pathways to exit and case closure
- Housing, education and employment
- Health and wellbeing
- Justice and legal
- Financial, material and transport, and
- Family, relationships and friends.
The Requirements provide for a case management approach that is flexible and dynamic, holistic, culturally sensitive, person-centred and strengths based. Interventions vary in intensity and duration depending on the risks and needs of all victim-survivors in the family group.2
This first edition of the case management program requirements provides a platform for organisational leaders to assess and begin to implement the changes they need to make to meet the expectations for an equitable, inclusive, person-centred case management response. Organisational leaders will need to work to align with these expectations and by end January 2023 should have commenced activities to embed the requirements into service delivery.
Implementation tools and resources
Safe and Equal are leading implementation support activities and will be available as a resource for the sector throughout the implementation of the Requirements and beyond. Safe and Equal’s focus will be on supporting agencies to develop quality practice and will ensure provision of resources based on sector needs.
Several tools have been developed by Safe and Equal to assist Specialist Family Violence Services to self-assess and develop an Action Plan to implement the Case Management Program Requirements. They are:
- Case Management Program Requirements Self-Assessment tool
- Case Management Program Requirements and Human Services Standards Self-Assessment tool
- Evidence for alignment to the Case Management Program Requirements
- Case Management Program Requirements Action Plan for SFVS
CRISIS RESPONSE MODEL
Alongside the Case Management Program Requirements, a new Family Violence Crisis Response Model is being implemented in 2022-23.
The model aims to ensure that victim survivors in crisis are supported through coordinated responses which are consistent, clearly communicated, and jointly managed by the services involved. It also prioritises crisis support provided at the local level, where possible and in line with victim survivor choice and safety.
The Crisis Response Model is comprised of:
Crisis Response Model Readiness Assessment Checklists
To support specialist family violence services to align its operations with the model Safe and Equal has developed a series of Readiness Assessment Checklists for use by in-scope services.
The document is intended to support Local Family Violence Services (including Family Violence Accommodation Services and The Orange Door Partner Agencies) to align their operations with the roles and responsibilities in providing emergency accommodation and the Victorian family violence refuge eligibility and prioritisation framework.
Key Considerations for Motel Relationship Management
Guidance on key considerations for motel relationship management has been identified as a key system enabler required to support services to implement and align with the Crisis Response Model. Safe and Equal have worked in collaboration with Safe Steps Family Violence Response Centre to develop this guidance.
In the development of this guidance Safe and Equal and Safe Steps Family Violence Response Centre acknowledge that the characteristics and availability of emergency accommodation options varies significantly across regions in Victoria and in many cases, specialist family violence services are limited in their choice of suitable accommodation. This document offers guidance and advice for services only, it does not establish minimum standards for emergency accommodation.