The aim of integration is to ensure all parts of the family violence service system work together in order to improve the safety of women and children and to hold perpetrators accountable for their use of violence.
Ongoing integration in northern metropolitan Melbourne involves:
- a shared understanding of family violence and a shared vision for change
- all parties understanding and striving to improve the system
- strong structures and relationships across the system
- information-sharing and collaboration across a broad range of organisations
- opportunities to discuss and resolve issues
- a ‘continuum of care’ through smooth referral pathways and
- consistent service responses.
In each region across Victoria, Integrated Family Violence Services partnerships lead the work of integration.
The earliest stages of work towards integration in Victoria saw the introduction of the Family Violence Protection Act 2008, including a consistent and comprehensive definition of family violence, the establishment of the specialist family violence services at the Magistrates’ Courts, the introduction of the Police Code of Practice and appointment of Victoria Police Family Violence Advisors and the introduction of the Common Risk Assessment Framework (CRAF).