Does the Respect Male Victims Toolkit refer to how a helpline or the Respect Men’s Advice Line operates?
No. The Respect Male Victims Toolkit is designed for frontline workers who support male victims of domestic abuse in a face-to-face setting. It is not a model of work for the Men’s Advice Line. It uses valuable insight and data gained from over 31,000 calls to the Men’s Advice Line (Respect’s helpline for male victims of domestic abuse). It would be impossible to use the assessment tools contained in the Respect Toolkit for Male Victims in a helpline setting, as it would take 3-4 hours to do so.
What is assessment, what is screening and are there differences between these?
Assessment, is a process in which questions are asked to better understand the needs of the client to ensure the service provides the right type of support. The client is then offered specific support and advice within the service and is not turned away except in exceptional circumstances. Screening, however, is an approach used to establish whether a potential service user is eligible for a service. For example, a counselling service for 16-25-year olds will ask potential service users how old they are; this is a ‘screening question’. The service will inform those outside this age bracket that they cannot be offered support and direct them to a different service. These are very different approaches.
Does Respect Male Victims Toolkit recommend screening or assessing male victims of domestic abuse?
The Respect Male Victims Toolkit does not recommend screening male victims of domestic abuse. It recommends that all service users, male and female, should be assessed, so that their support needs can be met in the best way possible. Respect does not screen male victims.
Does the Respect Male Victims Toolkit recommend different assessments for male and female victims of domestic abuse?
No. On the contrary, we recommend that organisations supporting female and male victims of domestic abuse must ensure that their assessment processes are consistent and cohesive. Respect does not recommend the use of a separate assessment process for male and female victims, as there is a risk that one client group might inadvertently be discriminated against. We recommend that organisations should decide that both female and male service users are proactively asked about their use of violence and abuse when assessed, or that neither male or female service users are asked. We have included this recommendation in the Respect Toolkit for Male Victims of Domestic Abuse.