From June 2018 to December 2020, the Urban Institute conducted a systemwide assessment of the system response in Allegheny County, PA to intimate partner violence (IPV) to better understand the system as a whole and operations of some key agencies
What is this report about ?
Urban Institute presents the findings from their systemwide assessment. The goals of this assessment were to 1) examine how IPV cases enter the justice and child welfare systems in Allegheny county, 2) analyze agencies’ processes for responding to IPV and 3) recommend ways the county can improve responses to IPV.
What are the recommendations?
- Have county leaders prioritize IPV
- Shift the focus from case outcomes to people’s experiences, especially during early encounters with formal services.
- Reinstate and sustain IPV-focused fatality reviews and ensure they embrace a non-blaming culture.
- Establish a specialized IPV unit in the Allegheny County Public Defender office
- Differentiate IPV from DV throughout all systems.
- Record survivor information consistently and securely share it when possible.
- Prioritize and improve referrals to batterers’ intervention programs
- Create a mechanism to consistently track aggressors’ and survivors’ experiences at system entry points.
How is this report being used?
The county executive and Mayor of the City of Pittsburgh created an IPV Reform Leadership task force in May 2022 to actively work on addressing these recommendations and improving the system.