Software helps identify children and adults at risk of domestic violence

In a bid to combat abuse and violent domestic incidents – such as the tragic death of Baby P – new computer software has been unveiled to help identify children and vulnerable adults who may be at risk.

Feb 5, 2009
By Paul Jacques
Haroon Iqbal

In a bid to combat abuse and violent domestic incidents – such as the tragic death of Baby P – new computer software has been unveiled to help identify children and vulnerable adults who may be at risk.

The software enables enforcement agencies to record and manage incidents of domestic violence, children at risk, vulnerable adults and hate crime. Full case management facilities aid instant identification of potential victims and perpetrators so that causes for concern can be acted on rapidly. Those at risk can be identified according to their name, known associates or address.

Importantly, in view of concerns about the breakdown of communications and recording of actions taken, a single screen overview shows at a glance the current status of individual cases. This is backed up by online recording of risk assessments and warnings issued. A complete case history is also maintained, showing all events associated with a case, such as workflow, antecedences, visits and telephone calls.

The software, PROtect from criminal intelligence IT specialist ABM, also shows full details of custodial and community-based sentences, as well as court orders served. An action plan, supervision and reparation orders can also be held on the system.

By integrating PROtect with ABM’s mapping system – the Prophecy module – incident locations can be displayed graphically on an Ordnance Survey map to allow time of day, day of week and trend analysis.

Anton Roe, director of operations at ABM, which has worked with the Metropolitan Police, New York Police Department (NYPD) and Western Australia Police, explained: “A key element is being able to bring together pertinent information, which might be held traditionally in many different locations and by different agencies – such as police forces, local authority social services and welfare departments – helping transform raw information and links between items and incidences into intelligence. This helps increase the likelihood that action can be taken before, rather than after, an event.

“Cumulative experience over the years that has led to statutory guidelines and development of best practice is incorporated into PROtect, allowing application of standardised processes and workflows to enforce adherence to approved procedures.”

He believes the software will play a valuable role in helping to ensure that people at risk are identified before they become victims – and to bring to justice those who are not prevented from committing such offences.

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