The Police and police commissioners

So calledAccredited work” with domestic abusers – why Police commissioners are ill-advisedly throwing away hundreds of thousands of pounds into efforts which are near totally misplaced.

The DRIVE project focuses efforts on a relatively small number of High Risk / serial offenders who might be, just possibly, in the “power and control model”. The ACPO paper (Association of Chief Police Officers) in 2009 estimated there to be 25,231 serial / repeat abusers nationwide in this mould, which compares with more than 10,000 call outs in Northamptonshire in the Freedom of Information data contained in in the two fugures below and the statistics at the end of this post.

But the vast majority of police work will involve Medium and low risk abusers who are very much more likely in the “situational couple” model – where – as can be seen very clearly from the statistics below  the police were called out to a very significant proportion of female abusers.

Respect’s accreditation of perpetrator work is to a very large extent based on the Duluth perpetrator model and is then, in turn, based on the DVIP’s version of the Duluth model. The model favoured for “accreditation” is that model, revised somewhat in 1998 by the senior figures now in Respect who originally worked at DVIP. The CEO of Respect, Ms Jo Todd, was co-rewriter of the model along with Ms Kate Iwi of Pai Pact, who at least until 2013, and probably later, was still training that model. They re-wrote the model because of critical research funded by the Joseph Rowntree Trust (JRT) which pointed out the enormous problems with drop-outs and other fundamental things. 

In 2005/ 6 the police in Northamptonshire began a policy of “arrest someone”. This was probably the same as happened everywhere else. As can be seen by the statistics here that resulted in a great deal less “call out” work which could be seen as having been about “keeping the peace.” The result was that call outs plummeted. But of course the police arrested very many more men than women and often they ended up arresting the man rather more often than the woman so the men learnt – “don’t call the police you’ll probably get arrested yourself” and the women learnt: “call the police and get him arrested”, as illustrated by the next figures.

This fitted very nicely with the radical feminist mantra: “Violent men are all the same and they will not change. The only thing for a woman to do is to leave him.” But it flew in the face of what the originally researched group of women victims said they wanted: “The man without the violence”. Perhaps that wish is what also leads to the large percentage of withdrawal statements and inevitably to the demands to “prosecute anyway.”

DVIP was the first “accredited” project in 2009, the year that ACPO concluded that there was no mileage in perpetrator projects from the police point of view. Research into the effectiveness of DVIP and 3 other projects was begun a year earlier, the so-called Mirabal Project. It was completed in 2015 at a cost of £1.25m. One of the main researchers was Prof Liz Kelly, who, in the report, feigned astonishment that so few men completed the programme.   Feigned?  Because she knew that that would be the likely outcome, having been involved with the JRT sponsored research of DVIP in 1998.

Prof. Marianne Hester has now completed research on the “Drive Project.” The latter does, perhaps, at first glance offer some progress with high risk abusers + 4% over non-Drive referrals. Some of the more positive details of the learning now clearly outline things we have been saying for the last 25 years! The one-to-one work with perpetrators has learnt quite a lot – for example that each person is an individual, not the stereotype seen by DVIP. Prof Kelly. Prof Hester was relieved when she didn’t have to report the drop-outs. How come? Because the participants are “High engagers” , “medium engagers” and “non-engagers”. The project continues with “disruption” for non-engagers and of course they slip between “high/medium/non” engagement without further ado.

 One small component of “The Drive programme”, is yet another revision of the failed work of DVIP. Of course it is quite reasonable to attempt to revise something which isn’t working. The difficulty is that those people who are attempting to initiate the changes have seriously not got a clue about how that might be achieved.  They have also loudly claimed in the past that the public and funders can have confidence in the originally accredited programmes – which have still demonstrated as good as no outcomes! 

The Labour party in opposition has been soundly beaten by the Conservatives mainly because they had an underlying ideology from which the leadership was (and is) unable to deviate.  Respect and DVIP are very much in the same boat. They have an ideology and a practice from which they are unable to deviate. That ideology funds the feminist mantra espoused by the CEO of Refuge on between £210 k and £220 k per annum – as per these newspaper articles of more than a year ago.

Dr Louise Dixon pointed out the ideology quite clearly in 2012, concluding:  “The accreditation should be scrapped.”

The Centre for Social Justice, a government think tank, also called for a fresh start to be made because the perpetrator programmes were not working.

The Home Office, funder of Cafcass who advocate and fund courses provided by “accredited projects” also concluded that there is little or no effectiveness from the Duluth style work.

The woman that wrote the original Duluth programme, the late Ellen Pence, very clearly stated in 1999 that she had been mistaken in placing such a focus on “Power and Control.”

So we have now been waiting for yet more research which certainly concludes that the problems are virtually the same as they were in 2015, the same as they were in 1998 and the same that they have always been.  You’ll notice that there are “no drop-outs” – there are only “high engagers and low engagers and non-engagers”  in the process.When you read the Executive summary, all 16 pages, it reads more like a sales pitch than anything else. When you read the “anecdotes” you’ll be struck by the sheer lack of numbers 30 interviews of service users – of 506, 3 years, 3 different projects! 18 interviews of victims, of 19 and 88 interviews with professionals.

Work on impulse control and emotional regulation stood out in interviews with service uses” — “Well! Well! Well!” Domestic Violence – we are told by radical feminism is not about “Anger management.” So it is now called “impulse control”. “Emotional regulation!” Fabulous! But which emotions? Do they have any real idea? Of course some case managers will have been busy learning and reading.

Some elected police commissioners have wasted important resources by funding a style of perpetrator programme associated with Respect and SafeLives which simply does not contribute to the outcomes. Some, unfortunately are continuing to do this. It fails to engage with the men, and, of course, blames the men for this!

We cannot claim that we have all of the answers but we can claim that we have moved a long way towards finding methods that work. 90% plus of men and 95% plus of women complete our work 100%. That would give a body of work which could be researched and out of that it could begin to be established what helps most to bring about changes from intensive group work and what doesn’t.

Because of the compact and therapeutic nature of the work we deliver we have been able to make changes based on experience in a double-quick time.  What we have isn’t perfect but our calculation is that it is 3 times better than DVIP’s work based on their claims. Based on the research our work would be nearly infinitely better.

Our actual costs? About £1,000 per head.  DVIP’s cost for 33 completions was £219k. They claimed a 70% success rate i.e. 21 men. In round figures £10k per successful completion – and 198 as good as no progress!

Another issue at the heart of the strategy and the ideology is that women are victims and men are perpetrators.  If we go back to look at the original Northants police call outs it is very clear that a significant proportion of call outs were to female “disturbers of the peace” for which we could read “abusers.”

Linked here are 567 research projects which conclude that within domestic relationships women are as violent as men!  Women kill very slightly fewer children than men. Girls are much more at risk of abuse from their mother than they are from their father! Boys are slightly more at risk of abuse from their father than they are from their mother. 

Dr Dixon concluded in 2012 that the underlying problems involving female violence were so very little different from men that there was no need for males and females to have separate courses.

We, too, had concluded that in 1995. We are the only programme in the country delivering work with both men and women in mixed groups. We have as good as had no problem at all with that aspect of the work.

When we look at the ACPO research in 2010 these were some of the findings: to be added.

P 29 to be added

And

Conclusions page to be added

From Temper! (Domestic Violence) Ltd – reg charity 1081139 – David Eggins

Some thoughts for BBC radio Northampton, following the interview yesterday 26.4.12    Notice the date this was originally written

Northamptonshire Police arrest policy and statistics from FOI information police had provided.

The benefits to the police of the arrest policy.

For people not familiar with Northamptonshire the various towns and areas have very “rounded” populations as follows in brackets. Daventry (79k) , South Northants (88.5k) and East Northants (85k) are largely rural areas, Corby (55k) has a high Scots population based on a steelworks and Wellingborough (45k)  was one of the “rehousing towns” for East London in the 60s. One could say that Kettering (50K) and Northampton (212k)  are largely the “traditional” Northamptonshire towns.      

Knocking the figures into “sound-bytes” you could say that the arrest policy has very dramatically reduced the numbers, eg. Northampton  male vics most recently (2012), 213, down from 1,777 (2006) and similarly female victims (2012)  867, down from 2704 (2006). So 1/8th the men now call the police and just under 1/3rd the women.

And respectively Wellingborough,   64, down from 608, 1/9th the men,  and  231 from 912, ¼ the women. So in terms of the arrest policy being seen to work, from the police perspective, they now attend very markedly fewer cases and have a very high arrest percentage, particularly of men. So the policy obviously does work.

In Northampton on the subject of arrest about 1 in 10 women got arrested  in 2006 and about 1 in 5 men. Likewise in Wellingborough just over 1 in 10 women was arrested and just over 1 in 4 men.

Now the arrest figures in Northampton are 80 of 87 men and 1 in 2 women and in Wellingborough 3 out of 4 men get arrested and 1 in 2 women. The early violence figures 2004,2005,2006 were very much in the male/ female proportions which the research stated, 7 women and 5 men per thousand would be victims of extreme behaviour. 

Clearly the police and victim supporting agencies now have very much less work involving domestic violence than they had in 2006. Have people changed their behaviour or are they simply calling out the police much less because of the hassle involved? It is likely to be both, some cases falling one way and others going the other way.  Very notably men’s calls to the police have plummeted.

So why have men reporting domestic violence dropped by 9/10ths? Is it to avoid the hassle, or is it that many men have called the police and found themselves labelled as the abuser and separated away for a night in the cells?  One perception is that it is the men that get arrested and the women are excused, the figures could seem to match that theory. 

Or is it easier to arrest a man, who will often go quietly, and you can chuck him out in the middle of the night and tell him to walk home than to arrest a woman, who will quickly complain of this and that and, if her boobs get accidentally touched in the arrest process will quickly add  “sexual assault” to her list of complaints! And then there is the perception about who will look after the children?  It is potentially much less risky for a police officer for a man to be arrested than it is for a woman, and Brownee points too? 

As far as “victim supporting is concerned”, by which we should understand female victim supporting, Nationwide, Women’s Aid claim to have about 378 projects. In Northamptonshire there were 4 (or more) Refuge groups, there were 2 “Sunflower Centres” and, in addition Victim Support  – which is very probably much more “gender neutral”.  Disregarding the fact that probably every “woman’s organisation” will also have a dedicated domestic violence support worker, the mainline organisations had annual joint income of around £1.7m.     

Victim supporting for men is virtually non-existent, nationwide, although Womens Aid may claim that their policy says they do, ask them about post pubescent boys and refuges.

Courses to help only men change their behaviour are, with the exception of ours,  all in a radical feminist mindset and miss the mark with the vast majority of men.  Very serious criticism of the accredited work can be found here. Statistics are added via this link

 Non accredited work – with both men and women ,which touches the mark is what we do: hence my concerns.    David Eggins, Temper Domestic Violence

Northamptonshire     Pre- arrest      and      post arrest      policy Figures 1 and 2 above illustrate this.

01.04.03 – 31.03.04          male vics              F ? Arrest             female vic            M ? arrested

Corby                                   466                         0                             701                      0

Kettering                             417                         0                             618                      1

Daventry                             552                         0                             677                      0

S. Northants                       361                         0                             422                      0

Northampton                    1228                       0                              2051                    0

Wellingborough                599                         0                             816                      0

E. Northants                       536                         1                             739                      1

Not stated                           0                              0                            7                           0

Northants total 4159                       1                              6031                       2

01.04.04 – 31.03.05          male vics              F? arrest              female vic            M ? Arrest

Corby                                    536                         0                            823                      4

Kettering                             493                         1                             724                      3

Daventry                             552                         0                             677                      0

S northants                         361                         0                             422                      0

Northampton                    1228                       0                              2051                    0

Wellingborough                599                         0                             816                      0

E Northants                        536                         1                             739                      1

Not stated                           0                              0                            7                           0

Northants total                 4305                       2                            6259                    8

01.04.05 – 31.03.06          male vics              F arrested       female vic      M rest

Corby                                    530                         95                          823                 223

Kettering                             496                         78                           803                 195

Daventry                             445                         41                           589                 99

S. Northants                       278                         28                           387                  65

Northampton                    1777                       186                         2704                535

Wellingborough                608                         79                 912                         233

E. Northants                       498                         72                           684                168

Not stated                           11                           0                              14                   0

Northants total                 4643                       579                     6916              1518

Corby            male vic          F male   vic           Male arrest         female arrest

2003 – 2004                    466                 701                         2                              0

2004 – 2005                     536                 823                         2                              0

2005 – 2006                     530                  823                         223                         78

2009 -10                           59                    261                         238                         45

2010 -11                           78                    290                         257                         51

2011 -12                          95                     286                         192                         47

continued

Kettering    male vic                f male vic             Male arrest         female arrest

2003 – 2004        417                         618                         1                              0             

2004 – 2005        493                         724                         1                              0

2005-2006            496                         803                         195                         78

2009 -10                79                           258                         218                         44

2010 -11                 66                           270                         220                         28

2011 -12                 88                           273                         163                         34

Daventry           m. vic                f male vic          Male arrest         female arrest

2003 – 2004         552                         677                         1                              0

2004 – 2005         552                         718                         1                              0

2005-2006            445                         589                         99                           41

2009 -10               49                           174                         148                         25

2010 -11               68                           168                         125                         31

2011 -12               64                           189                         132                                                                        

Northampton    m. vic                f male vic        Male arrest         female arrest

2003 – 2004         1228                       2021                       0                              0

2004 – 2005         1228                       2021                       0                             0             

2005-2006            1777                       2704                       535                         186

2009 -10               208                         836                         764                         123

2010 -11               210                         879                         792                         116

2011 -12               213                         867                         566                         97          

 Wellingborough        m.vic  f male vic              Male arrest         female arrest

2003 – 2004                         599         816                         0                              0

2004 – 2005                         599         816                         0                              0

2005-2006                            608         912                         233                         79

2009 -10                               56           258                         235                         39

2010 -11                               46           233                         226                         29

2011 -12                               64           231                         181                         32

East Northants         m. vic        f. male vic         Male arrest         female arrest

2003 – 2004                         536         739                         1                             1             

2004 – 2005                         536         739                         1                              1

2005-2006                            498         684                         168                         72

2009 -10                               34           182                         159                         19

2010 -11                               44          161                         140                         26

2011 -12                               38           1.71                         111                         13

South Northants   m. vic           fmale vic          Male arrest         female arrest

2003 – 2004                         361         422                         0                              0

2004 – 2005                         361         422                         0                              0

2005-2006                            278         387                         65                           28

2009 -10                               32           116                         75                           18

2010 -11                               25           106                         63                           13

2011 -12                               46           127                         65                           14

Northamptonshire m.vic         f.male vic        Male arrest         female arrest

2009 / 10                             516         2055                       1838                       313

2010 /11                              534         2090                       1827                       297

2011 / 12                             609         2131                       1413                       258