Victim notification is an essential piece of the role Battering Intervention and Prevention Programs have in victim safety. Most believe that BIPP’s first priority is the batterer, but in actuality it is the victim. BIPPs were developed to increase victim safety and provide education to batterers to facilitate the end of family violence. BIPPs have the responsibility and are required to, at a minimum, notify victims when their batterer enters or exits from the program, or anytime a BIPP believes their safety may be in jeopardy.
Entrance/exit notification, containing only factual information, shall be mailed within 5 days and include the explanation that a batterer’s participation in or completion of the program does not guarantee the absence of future violence;
Not disclosing victim information to batterers, including victims verifying batterers’ compliance or continued abuse;
Access to information regarding safety planning;
Potential consequences and safety issues that may arise for victims from program contact or continued communication with the program;
Options available to victims, such as protective orders, referrals to family violence shelters and centers, legal advocacy, and other services; and
Victims’ choice to initiate or terminate contact with the program or provider at will.
Disclosure that the batters’ completion of the program is not a guarantee of the absence of future violence.
Programs and providers shall establish criteria for satisfactory completion for participants. This ensures that decisions regarding program completion are consistent and objective for each participants. This criteria must be provided to each participant and the referral source.
Satisfactory completion includes all of the following but is not limited to:
Completion of orientation and assessment/intake;
Completion of required number of sessions as directed by program (at a minimum of 36 hours and 18 weeks);
Programs or providers shall develop and keep a documented system for receiving referrals from the courts and for reporting to the courts regarding batterers’ compliance with the program.
Communication with the referral source should be undertaken in the following circumstances and with the indicated time parameters:
Batterers are deemed inappropriate for BIPP services.
Programs and providers can make recommendations to the referral source for additional treatments or services. Batterers with severe mental health problems may not be appropriate for group sessions. Programs and providers must comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Communication with the referral source should be undertaken in the
following circumstances and with the indicated time parameters:
Once assessment/intake is completed, notification should be given to Community Supervision and Corrections Division or other referral source as to batterers’ compliance or non-compliance with program obligations on a monthly basis.
Any known law violations, incidents of physical violence and/or termination from BIPP should be reported to referral source immediately (within 5 working days).
When batterers are exited from the BIP program for any reason, this should be reported to referral source within 5 working days and should only include factual information. This notification should include a statement that the participation in or completion of the program does not guarantee the absence of future violence. An evaluation of the success of a batter’s participation in the program should not be made.
Violations/New Charges Closed Cases BIPP may have additional referrals for participant Monthly progress reports Violations Exits
Commonly referred to as CCR, this is an integral part of the success of BIPPS. CCR can be a resolution to the haphazard, systematic response to family violence. CCR brings criminal justice personnel, family violence advocates and BIPPs together, as well as other community members.
Historically, the efforts of such a response to family violence has led to pro-arrest policies, victim-oriented prosecution, judicial oversight of offenders, probation monitoring and coordination with victim services. Building relationships within the community can only help programs with receiving referrals, holding batterers accountable, ensuring compliance, advocating for survivors, assessing risk and raising funds for BIP programs.
This diagram illustrates possible community partners who should be involved in the response to family violence. BIPPs should have positive, working relationships with each entity to ensure appropriate community action and advocacy.
Questions have been raised about whether criminal justice intervention in family violence cases is always the safest for survivors. Family violence and battering intervention programs have started to look outside the judicial system for other solutions.
BIPPs should engage in community organizing and other activities to prevent family violence and encourage social change.
Community Level- Prevention strategies at this level are typically designed to impact the climate, processes and policies in a given system. Social norm and social marketing campaigns are often used to foster community climates that promote intimate partnerships based on mutual respect, equality, and trust.
Societal Level- Prevention strategies at this level typically involve collaborations by multiple partners to promote social norms, policies, and laws that support gender equity and foster intimate partnerships based on mutual respect, equality, and trust.
Prevention initiatives are becoming more popular in the BIPP community. Prevention delivers a strong message for social change and is comprehensive, community-driven and community-specific. It builds long-term solutions and focuses on preventing violence before it occurs.
Asks why society is faced with family violence in the first place;
Identifies and works to reduce risk factors;
Identifies protective factors which promote healthy relationships and
Seeks partners in the community who bring new information, new influence, new experience, new insight and potential