It seems the University of Oklahoma has come with a screening tool to aid law enforcement and first responders when assisting victims of intimate partner violence. It is a step in the right direction when you take the initial call, but in my opinion, a roll of toilet paper has more value.
The screening tool has 11 questions -- designed to recognize potentially lethal situations and take action? News flash! This will do nothing but kick the safety of an individual to the curb!
According to the news article from a press conference: The tool is a screening questionnaire designed for use at domestic violence calls to help police officers, advocates and health care providers assist victims at risk of even further violence. Whenever possible, responders immediately meet the victim and take him or her to a safe place where they ask the questions. The process takes about 60 seconds and works as sort of a triage tool in domestic violence cases.“This assessment will help first responders recognize a potentially lethal situation and take action,” said Janet Wilson with the University of Oklahoma College of Nursing
After reading the article it made my blood boil. I said to myself “they do not get it.” All I continue to see is more of the same dollars directed at research instead of a prescription that saves lives. A prescription, if you will, that I brought to Oklahoma in the fall of 2010. I was there to assist attorney Jaye Mendros representing the families from the www.justiceforthedead.com site. I was invited by family members to examine the cases of the Garvin County Three (each unsolved intimate partner homicides) that also resulted in unseating a Sheriff during the November election. My trip to Oklahoma was, first and foremost, about domestic violence and a prescription for victims during National Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
Taking action does not include gathering information to see if the number of injuries will be reduced because a first responder circled or checked a box on a questionnaire developed in a study. Studies are little more than data gathered and collected and then entered into a hard wired computer. I have nothing against those who have worked to create this tool. My question for the “researchers” is what do you really know about intimate partner violence harm reduction and response? Have you ever been in the field during a call for assistance? Have you ever been on a crime scene before, during or after a tragedy? Have you ever spoken to a woman directly over the phone and directed her to safety? Do you have an understanding of the inner workings of an abusive and toxic individual? Do you understand the criminal element and Internet as it relates to a potentially violent offender? Has your method worked to keep victims alive?
I am going to take a guess, likely no different than the complied questions and answer, no!
Evidentiary Abuse Affidavit by Susan Murphy Milano from the Book "Time's Up" from Courage Network on Vimeo.