Your Purpose

In general, your purpose with respect to intimate partner violence is to support non-violence and safety. This purpose exists in the context of strength-focused collaborative and respectful professional relationships.

  • It is not your job to get people to acknowledge abuse or to leave abusive situations.
  • It is your job to provide a safe place for people to talk.
  • It is your job to recognize indicators of danger, support protective factors for survivors, provide information and resources to survivors and to perpetrators, know the relevant legal requirements, and maintain your own safety and support systems.
  • It is also your job to know your agency's policies and practices with regard to intimate partner violence and to challenge any policies and practices which are not supportive of client safety and non-violence.
  • Finally, it is important for you to have direct knowledge of the relevant dedicated resources in your community. Personal referrals, to a known and trusted colleague in a domestic violence or child welfare service, are more effective than referrals to the same agency without the personal connection.