Men’s Behaviour Change Programs
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and as advised by the Australian Government, Relationships Australia Victoria (RAV) suspended all face-to-face individual and group work programs and services on 23 March 2020. At that time, however, we also made a commitment to continue delivering services in alternative ways, such as via telephone and video, to ensure that clients were supported throughout this challenging time.
As a result of the steps detailed above, RAV suspended all men’s behaviour change program (MBCP) groups that had already commenced or were about to start.
RAV is still offering telephone support to men who were participating in or about to start an MBCP when groups were suspended. This support involves weekly engagement, risk assessment and risk management to these men, as well as partner safety contact to affected partners (or former partners) or relevant family members. We continue to respond to risk and maintain our work to hold men accountable for their behaviour through this period.
RAV is also continuing to provide perpetrator interventions for men who would otherwise be seeking an MBCP and where we have capacity, our centres are taking new self-referrals and referrals from other services. The service that we offer is in line with advice from Family Safety Victoria and No to Violence to maintain engagement with men seeking support to reduce their use of violence or controlling behaviours towards women and/or children.
Our current COVID-19 interim service for new referrals provides comprehensive telephone risk assessment for suitability into an MBCP.
If the man meets the suitability criteria for the MBCP, the service includes:
- Scheduled weekly telephone contact that focuses on risk assessment and risk management
- Assessment and management of risk through the Family Violence Information Sharing Scheme and reports to child protection and the police
- Strategies for men to manage their behaviours and avoid using family violence towards women and children.Family safety contact is provided for the affected partner (or former partner) or relevant family members of men who are assessed as suitable, and men are required to provide the contact details of affected partners (or former partners) or relevant family members in order to be eligible for this service. This enables RAV to provide risk assessments, safety planning and support to partners and their children, impacted by men’s violence.
While this service is not a substitute for an MBCP, the key outcome is regular engagement with men who use violence, keeping them visible within the system and holding them accountable for their behaviour.
Men who engage in this interim service will also gain some understanding of what is required to be group ready for an MBCP when they recommence.
For more information on our current COVID-19 interim service, contact your nearest centre.
(03) 9725 9964 I firstname.lastname@example.org
(03) 5911 5400 | email@example.com
(03) 9261 8700 | firstname.lastname@example.org
(03) 5820 7444 | email@example.com
(03) 8311 9222 I firstname.lastname@example.org