To guide the practice of senior child protection workers – Family and Domestic Violence (SCPW-FDV) in the Family and Domestic Violence Response Teams (FDVRTs) and Men's Domestic Violence Helpline (MDVHL) who are responsible for triage of Category two, Family Violence Incident Reports where children are identified. It provides information about the role of the SCPW-FDV in the FDVRT and the role of the MDVHL, including their relationship to the Metropolitan Central Intake Team and the district office.
The entry does not include practice information about identifying and responding to family and domestic violence (FDV) as this is covered in other entries within this chapter.
 In the regions the SCPW-FDV may also be triaging category 2 FVIRs with children until alternative arrangements can be negotiated.
 Metropolitan districts and Peel only, although alternative arrangements may be negotiated in the future.
The FDVRT is a partnership between the Department of Communities (the Departement), WA Police and non-government domestic violence services. The role of the FDVRT is to provide a coordinated and collaborative response to FDV.
Exposure to FDV is a form of child abuse that places children at high risk of emotional and physical harm and neglect. The FDVRT focuses on early intervention through improved information sharing and processes for joint assessment, triage and coordinated case management of families identified in DVIRs.
The role of the SCPW-FDV is to partner with WA
Police and domestic violence services to assess and respond to category 1 FVIRs
where children were identified as present or known to reside. The role of the
MDVHL is to assess and respond to category 2, FVIRs where children have been
identified (metropolitan and Peel districts). Both the SCPW-FDV and MDVHL will
provide a conduit to the district office for FVIRs pertaining to open cases;
and the Metropolitan Central Intake Team for those that require intake for
further child protection assessment and action or family support.
SCPW-FDV and MDVHL access FDVIRs from the Triage Application. Refer to the FDVRT Triage User Guide (in related resources) for guidance about accessing and using the system. For information about how WA Police define FDV refer to Police Definitions for Reporting FDV - WA Police (in related resources).
Where a FDVIR relates to a family that is a current open case to us, the SCPW-FDV and MDVHL worker should publish the FVIR to an open interaction and add the case worker's name in the 'Assigned To' field. Refer to the FDVRT Triage User Guide (in related resources) for further guidance. It is the case worker's responsibility to conduct the initial assessment, determine appropriate next actions and close the interaction in Assist.
Where a FVIR relates to a child abuse matter, including a crime perpetrated against a child, the SCPW-FDV or MDVHL worker must as a matter of priority:
The FDVRT conducts joint assessment and triage of all category 1 FVIRS. In some regional locations the FDVRT will also triage category 2 FVIRs that include children. The SCPW-FDV is involved in joint assessment and triage of category 1 (and where relevant, category 2) FVIRs, that include children. MDVHL is involved in the triage of category 2 FVIRs that include children across the metropolitan and Peel districts. The joint assessment process is underpinned by the Common Risk Assessment and Risk Management Framework (in related resources).
The SCPW-FDV should contribute the following information to the FDVRT for joint assessment of DVIRs:
If the family identified in the FVIR is Aboriginal, the SCPW-FDV should consult with the Aboriginal Practice Leader (or other relevant Aboriginal officer), as appropriate.
The FDVRT should make joint/collaborative decisions about which FVIRs receive a response and the FDVRT agency responsible for providing follow-up with the family.
Domestic Violence Helpline will review and triage category 2 FVIRs with children metropolitan and Peel districts, and:
The SCPW-FDV and MDVHL worker are responsible for determining which cases are referred to the Metropolitan Central Intake Team for intake.
Decisions about which cases we have a further role in must be informed by Chapter 2: Assessment and Investigation Processes. For cases where the recommended next action is intake, SCPW-FDV and MDVHL worker must publish the FVIR to Assist, create the interaction and re-allocate it to the correct Central Intake Team Leader. An email should then be sent to CPDuty@cpfs.wa.gov.au with the FVIR and interaction number.
Decisions about sourcing accommodation for women with or without children who are homeless as a result of FDV may need to be made in consultation with Entrypoint Perth (Centrecare). For more information about this accommodation support service refer to Chapter 1.3: Homelessness.
 For metropolitan districts only.
FDVRT partner agencies may provide joint responses to families identified in FVIRs. This includes joint visits and/or meetings with the adult victim or perpetrator.
The SCPW-FDV should only be involved in joint responses where there is a clear role or purpose for us. For example, when more information is required from the adult victim to inform the initial child protection assessment.
Worker and child/adult victim safety must be the primary considerations when home or client visits are planned. Refer to Chapter 2.3: Assessing Emotional Abuse - Family and Domestic Violence and Managing Safe Client Contact with the Department (also in related resources).
FDVRT partner agencies share responsibility for convening multi-agency case management (MACM) for high risk cases of FDV. Refer to FDVRT Operational Guidelines (also in related resources) for more information.
Where the FDVRT consider that MACM is necessary for a family that is an open case to the Department this should be discussed with the case manager. In these circumstances, it may be more appropriate for the case manager to attend the MACM.
For families with children that are not an open case to us, the role of the SCPW-FDV in MACM is to contribute relevant information about prior contacts with the Department and information about available services provided by us, including: crisis care, financial assistance to leave, men’s and women’s domestic violence helplines, and Parent Support programs.
MACM is supported by the Memorandum of Understanding MOU - Information Sharing between Agencies with Responsibilities for Preventing and Responding to Family and Domestic Violence in Western Australia (also in related resources).
In August 2013, the Department, WA Police and Department of Corrective Services signed the Tripartite Schedule: Collaboration and Exchange of Information Regarding Serious Domestic Violence Offenders to support information exchange and collaborative case management of serious domestic violence offenders (in related resources).
Practice guidance to support the tripartite schedule, including instructions about how the Department and WA Police can register a victim on the Victim Notification Register is available in Guidelines for Collaboration and Exchange of Information Regarding Serious Domestic Violence Offenders (also in related resources).
FVIRs provided to us by WA Police can be used at our discretion for a range of purposes, including attaching to an affidavit to support care and protection order proceedings. Although this discretion is available to us, child protection workers should exercise caution when using FVIRs for this purpose, remembering that respondent parties receive copies of the affidavit and attachments during court proceedings. Child protection workers should consider the following when deciding whether to attach a FVIR to an affidavit:
Where the child protection worker considers that the information contained in the FVIR should not be provided to respondent parties, the following options are available:
Where sensitive information in a FVIR is highly relevant to an application and the above options do not address concerns adequately, contact the Legal Query Duty at Child Protection Legal Unit to discuss the appropriate legal approach.