Transforming family violence takes a team approach

Posted on August 1, 2019 by Iosis

When the Police are called out to a family violence situation, they refer the family to the most appropriate agency, one of which is Iosis. In these cases, our new teamwork is already making a difference. 

New legislation introduced on July 1st means that a Police Safety Order (PSO) can now be issued for up to 10 days whereas previously it was anything from 12 hours to 5 days. This means that the perpetrator can’t go back to the home for that period of time. If Iosis is appointed to the case, our family violence workers, Teina and Poulamee, work together as a team. 

Firstly, they attempt to connect with the perpetrator, either by phone or visiting them. “The first thing we do is listen – sometimes the people involved can’t wait to share their story,” says Teina. “The great thing is that most people recognise that they need help.” 

Depending on the situation, the Police might also put a protection order in place. Then, once they assess the situation, Iosis puts together a support plan. We identify the underlying issue – often there are a number of complex issues – then work together to address these through our wide range of services. 

“I’m relatively new to Iosis, but the range of services available here is such an advantage,” says Poulamee “Dealing with these issues in the right way is crucial. We often recommend a mix of services – from alcohol and drug addictions to parenting to anger management, from one-to-one counselling to budgeting.” 

She says that one of the most common trigger points is after separation. “Visits to children or family can often trigger abusive behaviour. When children witness this, it’s particularly concerning. Lack of accommodation and overcrowding is also a real issue and a trigger point.” 

Bill’s story: from a low point to a better place

Bill*, was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. He had a couple of bad episodes and Iosis became involved. “There was a lot of stress in his relationship,” says Poulamee. “Most of it was relationship stuff that stemmed from issues in his upbringing. We worked through these using non-violent solutions such as the 5 languages of love. Bill and his partner are now in a much better place.”

* Name changed to protect identity.

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