Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing (JHUSON) professor Jacquelyn C. Campbell, PhD, RN, FAAN, and colleagues are implementing and evaluating an intervention program for female victims of domestic violence in eight police jurisdictions in Oklahoma. "This study has the potential not only to increase safety for women in Oklahoma but also to change police response to domestic violence victims nationwide," says Campbell.
In the Lethality Assessment and Intervention Program, researchers will train police to use a brief risk assessment to identify female intimate partner violence victims who are at risk of further violence and/or homicide, and place them in immediate telephone contact with social service providers. This program already has been implemented without a formal evaluation throughout Maryland, and recently was recognized as one of the top 50 innovations in government by the Harvard Kennedy School's Ash Institute.
The aim of the research is to examine whether the intervention increases victims' help-seeking behavior and/or decreases their risk for future violence. The project involves police jurisdictions including Oklahoma City, Tulsa, El Reno, Talequah, Lawton, Stillwater and Broken Arrow, in Oklahoma. If the findings show that police can get more women to use domestic violence advocacy services by identifying those women in grave danger and ultimately keeping them safer, says Campbell many other jurisdictions will adopt the first responders lethality assessment protocol.
Campbell is collaborating with Dr. Jill Theresa Messing of Arizona State University, Dr. Janet Wilson at the University of Oklahoma, Sheryll Brown from the Oklahoma State Department of Public Health, and Dave Sargent from the Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence. The two-year project recently received a grant of more than $581,000 from the National Institute of Justice, Office of Justice Programs.