Ministry of Justice written question – answered on 24 January 2023.

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Photo of Gary Streeter Gary Streeter Conservative, South West Devon

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what safeguarding guidance the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service follows when it assists victims of domestic abuse.

Photo of Mike Freer Mike Freer Assistant Whip, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice

Cafcass’ domestic abuse practice guidance consists of a practice pathway and a guidance document that provides social work practitioners with a structured approach to risk assessment of domestic abuse in the family court. This was updated in May 2021 alongside a programme of training in its use for all practice staff. The materials can be accessed here: Resources for assessing domestic abuse - Cafcass - Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service.

The practice pathway guidance provides practitioners with a range of assessment tools to use when domestic abuse is part of a family’s circumstances. The aim of this guidance is to ensure that the safety and wellbeing of the child at the centre of proceedings; to promote the best interests of the child and offer a safe recommendation to the court; to work in a trauma focused, respectful and responsive manner; to assess the impact on the child of their lived experience of domestic abuse and to look for strengths in the family and community to promote safety.

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