Family violence multi-agency risk assessment and management framework

Helping to create a more collaborative, integrated system to support improved safety and wellbeing outcomes for all Victorians.

The Family Violence Multi-Agency Risk Assessment and Management Framework (MARAM) has been designed to increase the safety and wellbeing of Victorians by supporting relevant services to identify, assess and manage family violence risk effectively. The MARAM sets out key principles and elements that should be embedded into policies, procedures, service delivery and practice, and identifies the responsibilities of various organisations and staff across the system.

The MARAM has been established in law under a new Part 11 of the Family Violence Protection Act 2008. Although not all relevant organisations are included in the MARAM regulations yet, any organisation providing funded services relevant to family violence risk assessment and management should start aligning their policies, procedures, practice guidance and tools to the MARAM.

Aligning practices, procedures and policies to the MARAM will be a gradual process, with organisations beginning from different starting points and continuing to improve over time. It is not expected that all organisations will be able to implement all the requirements of the MARAM immediately. However, it is expected that organisations will start taking steps towards alignment. 

The MARAM is being rolled out in alignment with the Child and Family Violence information sharing schemes. 

For more information on the sharing schemes, see the Information sharing page or the Information sharing schemes and the MARAM framework page on the Vic.Gov website.

MARAM training

The Department of Health and Human Services is currently developing online  MARAM training for the Screening and Identification, and Brief and Intermediate responsibilities for practitioners from various department funded organisations that align to MARAM. 

This training will support practitioners to understand their responsibilities under this important new reform, including what it means for their day-to-day practice. These packages will be available in the first half of 2021.

  • Screening and Identification

    For practitioners in Antenatal Services, Care Services (formally known as Out of Home Care) and Maternal and Child Health who have roles that align with the Screening and Identification level of MARAM.

    Training relevant staff is a requirement for organisations who are aligning their policies and procedures to the MARAM framework. 

    Practitioners at the Screening and Identification level are identified as:

    • having roles that address universal needs of service-users and whose primary function is not related to family violence
    • they are in a position to identify or screen for family violence.

    MARAM Screening and Identification guide (word)

  • Brief and Intermediate

    For practitioners in Designated Mental Health, Alcohol and Other Drug and Homelessness services, Child FIRST and Family Services who have roles that align with the Brief and Intermediate level of MARAM.

    Training relevant staff is a requirement for organisations who are aligning their policies and procedures to the MARAM framework Practitioners at the Brief and Intermediate level are identified as:

    • having roles associated with family violence risk assessment and management in their usual work
    • engaging with people in crisis situations or cohorts who are at high risk of experiencing or using family violence
    • involving therapeutic intervention, a crisis service, case management support or broader needs assessment and management
    • having the ability to incorporate addressing family violence risk assessment and management in to their usual work.

    MARAM Brief and Intermediate Practitioner guide (word)

Other training

Government has funded the Domestic Violence Resource Centre Victoria (DVRCV) to provide a number of targeted training packages: 

  • Leading Alignment training, for leaders of organisations providing funded services relevant to family violence risk assessment and management
  • Comprehensive renewing practice training, for experienced specialist family violence practitioners 
  • Comprehensive’ training for new family violence specialists. 

To help you understand your organisational and staff responsibilities under MARAM, and identify the right training sessions for your staff, see the MARAM responsibilities: Decision guide for organisational leaders available on the MARAM practice guides and resources page on the Vic.Gov website.

To register for training, see the Our Courses page on the DVRCV website. 

Further MARAM training packages covering ‘screening and identification’ and ‘brief and intermediate practice’ are being tailored for DHHS workforces and will be available in the first half of 2021. For further information, please contact the DHHS Information Sharing and MARAM Implementation team infosharing@dhhs.vic.gov.au.

MARAM practice guides

You can access the MARAM practice guides from the MARAM practice guides and resources page of the Vic.Gov website, including: 

  • Foundational Knowledge guide
  • Responsibilities for Practice Guides 1 to 10.

Foundational Knowledge guide

This guide underpins all MARAM responsibilities for practice. It outlines key elements of the MARAM Framework, the service system, the evidence-based family violence risk factors that underpin all levels of risk assessment practice, and presentations of risk across different age groups, Aboriginal and diverse communities. The Foundational Knowledge Guide is required reading for all professionals including those in direct practice roles, leadership, governance, management and supervision.

Responsibilities for Practice Guides 1 to 10

Guides 1 to 10 reflect each of the ten responsibilities set out in the MARAM. These guides build on Foundational Knowledge to provide practice guidance from safe engagement, identification of risk, through to levels of risk assessment and management, secondary consultation and referral, information sharing, and multi-agency and coordinated practice. The practice guides also inform how the MARAM risk assessment tools are used. Professionals should work with their organisational leaders to understand their role and to identify which responsibilities they should be applying in practice.

For more information, contact Family Safety Victoria by email: infosharing@familysafety.vic.gov.au.