The introduction of the new Domestic Abuse, Stalking and Honour Based Violence (DASH 2009) Risk Identification, Assessment and Management Model means that for the first time all police services and a large number of partner agencies across the UK will be using a common checklist for identifying and assessing risk, which will save lives. ACPO Council accredited the DASH (2009) Model to be implemented across all police services in the UK from March 2009.
Laura worked with officers in the Metropolitan Police Service on Multi-agency Domestic Homicide Reviews (DHRs) in 2001. They were legislated for in 2004 in section 9 of the Domestic Violence, Crime and Victims Act 2004. Guidance was published on April 13th 2011. Findings from the DHRs have informed the DASH.
One key finding was that stalking behaviour - fixation and obssession - was not being identified or understood. Laura campaigned with others and was a specialist adviser to the All Party Parliamentary Stalking Law Reform Inquiry. The stalking law was implemented on November 25 2012. . A number of questions on stalking are included in the DASH. Training is crucial to understand the risk and the legislation.
WHY WAS THE DASH DEVELOPED?
Conclusions from many domestic homicides and serious case reviews showed:
- lack of understanding and training regarding risk identification, assessment and management
- insufficient risk identification, assessment and management
- insufficient information sharing
- failure to manage the intelligence
- failure to make the links across public protection and serial offending.
WHO DEVELOPED THE DASH?
- The DASH (2009) Model was developed by Laura Richards on behalf of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) and in partnership with Coordinated Action Against Domestic Abuse (CAADA).
- Drs Lorraine Sherian and Karl Roberts developed the 11 screening questions on stalking from their research.
WHO CAN USE THE DASH RISK MODEL?
- The DASH is for all professionals working with victims of domestic abuse, stalking and harassment and honour based violence.
- In England and Wales, the police service will use the ACPO DASH and partner agencies the CAADA DASH.
- There is also a risk checklist for victims of domestic abuse, stalking and honour based violence. This is called the Victim-DASH (V-DASH 2010).
- There are also further screening questions on stalking developed by Drs Lorraine Sheridan and Karl Roberts. This again has been adapted for victims to use.
- Training is crucial to understanding the DASH Risk Model. Without effective training, the same mistakes will continue to be made and questions will be asked about the DASH (2009) implementation process and what training professionals received.
- It could make agencies especially vulnerable if the tool has been implemented without accredited training or support for staff.
- Laura runs training on Multi-agency Domestic Homicide Reviews and on Stalking and Harassment.
HOW CAN I BE TRAINED IN THE USE OF THE DASH, DOMESTIC HOMICIDE REVIEWS AND STALKING, RISK AND THE LAW?
- NEW 2016: DASH Masterclass May 5 and 'Train the Trainer' May 19 sessions for professionals in central London. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org