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Early Intervention in Domestic Violence & Abuse: Summary and Recommendations

The Early Intervention Foundation (EIF) has been established to tackle the root causes of problems for children and young people, rather than waiting to address symptoms once problems are embedded.

We provide advice to all interested in Early Intervention including practitioners, Local Councils, Police and Crime Commissioners, Clinical Commissioning Groups, the voluntary sector and Government on the causes of poor outcomes for children and young people and what has been shown to work to tackle these. The purpose of this report is to assess the extent to which evidence on domestic violence and abuse indicates that it can be an important cause of long term problems for children and families, and the role of Early Intervention in pre-empting this. Future EIF work will focus on other drivers of poor child outcomes.

A particular focus of the EIF is on ensuring children and young people have the bedrock of social and emotional skills, resilience and capability they need to function as effective, responsible adults with good levels of autonomy and well-being. In that context Early Intervention refers to the programmes and practices provided to babies, children, young people and their families to help enable these outcomes. Many such Early Intervention services focus on supporting parenting as a key driver of success.

Therefore, in this Report as well as assessing the effectiveness of existing services aimed at the prevention of domestic violence and abuse, we have asked whether broader Early Intervention services can also help address domestic violence and abuse or whether in fact, the existence of domestic violence and abuse undermines their effectiveness.

This report is not intended as a systematic and exhaustive review of what works in addressing and preventing domestic violence and abuse. NICE have already conducted an authoritative review on domestic violence and abuse, and have published detailed guidance for practitioners informed by this, outlined in the box below. HMIC and the College of Policing will soon be conducting similar work for Crime and Policing.