By Bianca Caputo, Social Media Placement Student at WomanACT
WomanACT ‘s End Violence against Women Week in Toronto is less than a month away and we are glad to have Tim Kelly, Lisa Heslop, and Kate Wiggins introduce their The Domestic Violence Victim Safety Model. They are our panel presenters on Monday March 7th for the CAS VAW Advisory Committee, Toronto Region's annual Forum and on Tuesday March 8th for the Supporting Survivors by Supporting Staff training conference.
In the fall of 2009, the London Police Service, Changing Ways, Women’s Community House, John Howard Society, the Centre for Research and Education on Violence Against Women & Children and the University of Toronto entered into a partnership to explore alternate ways to engage moderate-to high-risk men charged with a domestic violence related offence. The partnership received victim justice funding from the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services. This project was subsequently replicated in Woodstock, Sudbury, Ottawa and Strathroy, Ontario.
The project was based on the ‘Needs Risk Responsivity’ service model. Men were provided with focused support, aimed at the dynamic factors that contributed to risk of recidivism.
To be eligible for inclusion in the pilot project, the accused had to meet the following criteria:
Importantly, this project was not designed to provide any feedback to the court process and men were clearly informed at all recruitment contacts that participation in this project was voluntary and would not lead to any leniency in sentencing. In fact, the substantive offence was not discussed at any time during the intervention.
More about our Speakers
Tim Kelly is the Executive Director of Changing Ways, a program for men who abuse women located in London, ON, Canada. He has spoken nationally and internationally on issues related to men’s violence against women and children, including community collaborations, accountability and the collective role men play in ending violence. He has focused much of his efforts in organizing campaigns, and challenging men to take responsibility for men’s violence against women and children. Currently, his work with high risk domestic violence offenders has lead him to partner on a project in London Ontario developing a standardized dynamic risk strategy for monitoring changing risk posed by men who abuse their partners.
Lisa Heslop was the Supervisor of the Family Consultant/Victim Services Unit, a crisis intervention unit of the London Police Service where she has worked 28 years. Her research interests have included a multi-year study which defined the unintended consequences of deinstitutionalization of mental health services by measuring police involvement with persons with mental illness; a number of projects exploring the impact of victimization; human rights issues related to police record checks and vulnerable position screening. Lisa has been working in partnership with Changing Ways on a community model to respond to high risk men accused of a domestic violence offence. She is a member of the clinical panel for the Office for the Children’s Lawyer.
Kate Wiggins is the Executive Director of Women’s Community House. Women’s Community House provides safe places and services for abused women and their children. Kate has been with WCH for 14 years, shepherding the organization through continuous growth and change. Kate is a longstanding member of the London Coordinating Committee to End Woman Abuse, a collaborative association of agencies committed to ending woman abuse. Kate is also a member of a variety of other community and provincial committees and is on the board of OAITH (Ontario Association of Interval & Transition Houses) representing the southwest region.
Don’t miss out on the opportunity to hear these individuals speak at our End VAW conference – click here to register for the upcoming event!
Note: Registrations is by invitation only.
The CAS VAW Advisory Committee, Toronto Region's annual Forum: Creating Connections, invites staff from MCSS funded VAW agencies and Child Protection agencies in the GTA.
Supporting Survivors by Supporting Staff is free for staff from MCSS funded VAW agencies in the GTA.