Domestic violence is in the public eye as never before, but how often are abused women consulted or involved in the new services and policies? This book investigates, and reveals that the voices of survivors of domestic violence are often simply not heard; silenced, the women themselves become invisible.
Is Anyone Listening? draws on the experiences of other service user movements to provide a strong conceptual framework for thinking about abused women's participation in policy and service development. It discusses empowerment issues and the women's movement against gender violence, exploring how far refuge organisations and other women's movement services have influenced statutory services and vice versa. It includes many practical ideas for involving women in the improvement of both policy and practice and gives examples of inspiring and innovatory projects.
Based on a study carried out as part of the Economic and Social Research Council's Violence Research Programme, Is Anyone Listening? offers a unique analysis of the sensitive and complex issues involved in developing service user participation within the domestic violence field. The insights it provides will enable policy-makers, activists, students, practitioners and women who have experienced domestic violence to move forward together.
Contents 1. Introduction Section One: Rethinking Service User Movements in Relation to Women Survivors of Violence 2. Women Survivors of Domestic Violence as Service Users: The Silenced Group 3. The Obstacles to Empowerment - What Kind of Power for Women Section Two: Women's Views and Voices in Domestic Violence Services 4. What Abused Women Think of the Service They Receive 5. How Much Do Agencies Listen to Domestic Violence Survivors? Section Three: How to Engage in Survivor Participation and Consultation 6. How To Do It: Empowerment and Stigma 7. How To Do It: Policies, Sensitivities and Resources 8. Practical Ways Forward and Innovation, Including Domestic Violence Forums 9. Further Innovatory Practice: Women's Aid, Women's Advocacy Organisations and Campaigns 10. Other Methods of Survivors Participation and Getting Agencies to Take Action 11. Conclusion