In 2000, Mayor Bart Peterson challenged the community to provide an accountable, comprehensive, and culturally sensitive approach to preventing family violence. The Domestic Violence Network (DVN) facilitated the creation and implementation of the Family Violence Community Wide Plan which continued for several years.
After reviewing the successes and growth areas of the Family Violence Community Wide Plan, with the support of a steering committee which included Indianapolis Mayor Gregory Ballard, Congressman Dan Burton, and Congressman André Carson, DVN launched a new initiative. Peace in Our Homes: A Call to End Domestic Abuse In Central Indiana was a three-year initiative that built on the foundation of its predecessor, but focused on the needs articulated by the Advocates Group, the Steering Committee, and community participants.
The third iteration of the Community Wide Plan began with a strong campaign to involve the entire community in violence prevention. By commissioning an environmental scan to assess community needs and the capacity to address domestic violence in Central Indiana, the Community Wide Plan 3.0 (CWP 3.0) was born.
Building on the foundation laid by the previous Community Wide Plans, CWP 3.0 sought to end domestic violence through bold strategies focusing on four targeted populations: the community, victims/ survivors, people who batter and abuse, and youth. Over the course of its three year period, CWP 3.0 brought together service providers, law enforcement, and the community to improve the response to and the prevention of domestic violence in Central Indiana. At the same
time, partnerships among these entities strengthened as they worked toward the common goal of ending domestic violence.
Domestic violence is a complex problem intertwined with many other social and systemic issues. DVN’s data collection work, which analyzes information from local agencies and the criminal justice system, shows that domestic violence is closely related to risk factors such as poverty, mental illness, substance abuse, and child abuse and neglect. While many domestic violence organizations account for these factors in their services, these factors require additional attention to ensure providers address the full scope of issues victims and survivors face.
Based on feedback obtained from eight listening sessions attended by a total of 73 participants which included advocates, law enforcement, community members, prosecutors, medical professionals, and educators; DVN will employ a new and innovative approach to the next Community Wide Plan called Intersections: Engage, Collaborate, Transform. This approach will center on convening additional social service agencies to assist in identifying and cultivating protective factors to prevent domestic violence. DVN will select a different risk and protective factor every six months on which it will focus Advocates Group trainings, community trainings, awareness events, educational opportunities, and social media promotion. Additionally, DVN will convene agencies that directly address each risk and protective factor and facilitate collaboration between these agencies and domestic violence service providers. After learning from one another, speci c goals and outcomes will be identifed for the organizations to continue the work together.