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Keywords:

  • domestic violence;
  • intimate partner violence;
  • differentiation;
  • screening;
  • triage;
  • children;
  • parenting plans;
  • family courts;
  • multidisciplinary collaboration

In February 2007 the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges and the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts brought together a working group of thirty-seven experienced practitioners and researchers to identify and explore conceptual and practical tensions that have hampered effective work with families in which domestic violence has been identified or alleged. Five central sets of issues were raised at the conference and are discussed in this report. These include the following: differentiation among families experiencing domestic violence, screening and triage, participation by families in various processes and services, appropriate outcomes for children, and family court roles and resources. The report emphasizes the need for continued multidisciplinary collaboration in order to better serve families affected by domestic violence and it includes an appendix of consensus points as well as suggestions for formation of ongoing work groups.