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Domestic violence, adult social care and MARACs: implications for practice

McLaughlin, H and Banks, C and Bellamy, C and Robbins, R and Thackray, D (2014) Domestic violence, adult social care and MARACs: implications for practice. UNSPECIFIED. NIHR School for Social Care Research/Manchester Metropolitan University.

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Abstract

Assesses the effectiveness of social care’s contribution to the development of MARACs and the protection of adults facing domestic violence, using the city of Manchester as a case study site. MARACs are multi-agency risk assessment conferences that share information about the top ten per cent of high risk domestic violence cases in order to produce co-ordinated actions to reduce the risk and increase victim safety. The research data collection used a multi-methods approach and included attending MARACs; interviewing agency representatives who attend MARACs (plus some who did not) and adult social workers; focus groups with survivors of domestic violence, and practitioners who specialise in domestic violence support. People whose cases had been considered at a MARAC were also interviewed. The study found that agency representatives attending MARACs showed high levels of commitment to the MARAC approach. However, most attendees felt unsupported by their employer and supervisors in this demanding work while adults at risk of domestic violence who have had their information shared at a MARAC generally did not understand the process. Participants from different agencies considered the MARAC arrangements would benefit from being made statutory, as this would enhance the profile of the work and ensure that key agencies attend.

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