Risk assessment & management
Risk assessment & management
As a specialist family violence practitioner, you will be undertaking comprehensive family violence risk assessments to ascertain the risk of serious harm or death for your clients. You will also develop strategies to manage your client’s safety and hold perpetrators in view and accountable.
Responding to family violence risk requires the involvement of multiple services. It’s important you understand the scope of your responsibilities and are aware of the systems that are in place to help you keep victim survivors safe.
The Multi-Agency Risk Assessment and Management (MARAM) framework
In Victoria, the Family Violence Multi-Agency Risk Assessment and Management (MARAM) framework is used to ensure all services are effectively, collaboratively and consistently identifying, assessing and managing family violence risk.
The MARAM builds on the Common Risk Assessment Framework, or ‘CRAF’, to address several limitations identified by the Royal Commission into Family Violence.
As a specialist family violence worker, you are required to complete training to understand the MARAM framework and how to assess and manage risk in line with the framework. You can enrol in face-to-face MARAM training via the Domestic Violence Resource Centre’s training page.
In the meantime, you can also find more information about the MARAM framework and its implications on the Victorian Government’s website.
Keeping victim survivors safe is a shared responsibility which relies on effective information sharing between different parts of the service system.
In your role you will be required to actively share information with and request it from other support services. How you approach this task must be guided by appropriate information sharing legislation. To learn more about this legislation, go to our dedicated page on information sharing.
Risk Assessment and Management Panels
In 2016, Risk Assessment and Management Panels (RAMPs) were established across Victoria. There are 18 RAMPs that convene monthly to promote the safety of women and children most at risk of experiencing serious threat from family violence.
Specialist family violence practitioners can refer a client to a RAMP if she is at serious and imminent risk and requires a coordinated action plan to lessen or prevent the threat to her (and her children’s) life, health, safety or welfare.
Whether or not your client falls into the serious risk category will depend on the outcome of the risk assessment you make (according to the MARAM framework) and the family violence report (L17) made by Victoria Police respectively.
If you identify a victim survivor is at serious risk of being killed or injured you can contact your local specialist family violence service to provide information to support a RAMP referral.
RAMPs are not a substitute for existing systems and current case management or coordination practice. They work to enhance the response to those most at risk of serious and imminent threat.