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Coordinating the Criminal Justice Response to Intimate Partner Violence: the Effectiveness of Councils in Producing Systems Change
Nicole E. Allen (au)
Communities across the U.S. are focused on creating coordinated responses to intimate partner violence (IPV); ideally, this involves promoting best practices in the justice and human service systems, and engaging a broad array of community sectors. Illinois took an innovative approach to facilitating the development of coordinated responses statewide. Beginning in 1990, the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts spearheaded the creation of a network of Family Violence Coordinating Councils (FVCC) across 22 Judicial Circuits in the State. Councils are common vehicles for the creation of coordinated responses, yet there is limited empirical evidence regarding whether they facilitate desired change. Further, the value of having a statewide coordinating structure has not been examined to date. This study examined the effectiveness of this statewide coordinating council structure by investigating the extent to which FVCC have an impact on perceived proximal (perceived shifts in stakeholder knowledge and relationships and institutionalized change) and more distal systems change outcomes in the systems response to IPV (e.g., accessibility of orders of protection). The study attended to those factors and processes that facilitate or impede FVCC success with regard to their institutionalized change capacity. Figures.
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