Empowering Victims through Partnerships

By Kacy Mixon, M.S., LMFT

Partnering with Victims:

People figurines pushing puzzle pieces together
[Flickr, Solving Jigsaw Puzzle by Yoel Ben-Avraham,CC BY-ND 2.0] Retrieved on September 17, 2015
When professionals working with domestic violence populations send messages that communicate both concern and respect, it can make a big difference in building trust and providing validation. Creating a partnership for safety reduces victim isolation and may also reduce victims’ feelings of powerlessness and anxiety. The chart below highlights strategies that professionals can suggest to develop partnerships with victims by promoting increased support, awareness, and self-care [2].

Chart about helping victims reduce powerlessness & anxiety
Smith, L.B., Mixon, K.A. (2013). Unit 3: Safety. Family Centered Treatment: Domestic Violence Training. [Online curriculum].
Partnering with the Community:

It is Department of Defense policy to:

“Provide for the safety of victims, hold abusers appropriately accountable for their behavior; and coordinate the response to domestic abuse with the local community.” [1]

Community coordinated responses are a way to prioritize the safety and welfare of victims and children experiencing domestic violence.  Outlined in DoD instructions are military protocol connected to the prevention and responses to domestic violence. The protocol that military personnel (Commanders, Victims Advocates, etc.) adhere to have a vital role in creating partnerships with the military and civilian community. Nearly three quarters of military families live off-base [3]. The chart below shows active participants that aid in community partnerships.

Chart on domestic violence coordinated community responses
Department of Defense. (2011). Domestic Violence Involving DoD Military and Certain Affiliated Personnel. Retrieved on July 14, 2013 from: http://www.dtic.mil/whs/directives/corres/pdf/640006p.pdf. (p. 2)

References

[1] Department of Defense. (2011). Domestic Violence Involving DoD Military and Certain Affiliated Personnel. Retrieved on July 14, 2013 from: http://www.dtic.mil/whs/directives/corres/pdf/640006p.pdf. (p. 2)

[2] Smith, L.B., Mixon, K.A. (2013). Unit 3: Safety. Family Centered Treatment: Domestic Violence Training. [Online curriculum].

[3] Cronk, T.M. (2013). Family resources must Connect with Communities, Official Says. American Forces Press Service, U.S. Department of Defense. Retrived on July 20, 2013.

This post was written by Kacy Mixon, M.S., LMFT, Social Media Specialist.  She is a member of the MFLN Family Development (FD) team which aims to support the development of professionals working with military families. Find out more about the Military Families Learning Network FD concentration on our website, on Facebook, on Twitter, YouTube, and on LinkedIn.

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