Credits to
Elisabetta Forti

A kaleidoscopic challenge: the importance of a multifocal approach in the treatment of cases of gender-based violence

Issue 9/2019

Abstract. A correct approach to complex phenomena, such as gender-based violence, requires a multifaceted and multi-dimensional view of the phenomenon itself. Like in an image provided by a kaleidoscope everything in its essence can be seen and understood only by considering all the reflections of the mirrors together, it is only through the union and mirroring of different branches of knowledge, disciplines and roles that it is possible to understand violence and face it. The article intends to highlight how only a multi-professional and multidisciplinary approach can guarantee the implementation of really effective interventions against gender violence. Assessing the risk of recidivism represents an unavoidable starting point to ensure the victims receive real protection, but it is also crucial to implement support interventions, constant over time, addressed to all the people involved in the dynamics of such violence. These actions not only perform therapeutic functions, but also have a strongly preventive character.

This article was submitted for evaluation by two experts, with a positive outcome.


SUMMARY: 1. Introduction: multidisciplinarity and evaluation of the risk of recidivism and the escalation of violence. – 2. Characteristics of an abusive relationship and related interpretative models. – 3. Methods of evaluating the risk of recidivism and the escalation of violence. – 3.1. Unstructured clinical evaluation. – 3.2. Actuarial instruments. – 3.3. Structured professional evaluation – 4. Approaches to risk assessment. – 4.1. The SARA System. – 4.4.1. Ten items concerning the offender and the history of violence. – 4.1.2. Victim vulnerability factors. – 4.2. Possible applications of the SARA system. – 4.3. The use of the SARA system within health and social services. – 4.4. The Spanish approach to risk assessment and management. – 4.5. The British approach to risk assessment and management. – 5. Victimisation surveys. – 6. Notes on the Italian situation: victimisation surveys concerning violence against women. – 6.1. The experience of Anti-violence Support Centres: the D.i.R.e. Association. – 6.2. The Vercelli experience. 6.2.1. The activity of the Vercelli Anti-violence Network. – 6.3. Interventions for perpetrators in Italy. – 7. Some final considerations.


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