Topic: Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence: Services for Victims and their Children

Scientific Ratings in this topic:

1 - Well-Supported by Research Evidence

2 - Supported by Research Evidence

3 - Promising Research Evidence

4 - Evidence Fails to Demonstrate Effect

5 - Concerning Practice

NR - Not able to be Rated

Learn more about the scale

Definition for Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence: Services for Victims and their Children:

Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence: Services for Victims and their Children are defined by the CEBC as programs that address the needs of victims of Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence situations, including services for children exposed to domestic violence. Over one million women in the United States are physically assaulted by their partner each year and over half need medical attention. Often, women surviving domestic/intimate partner violence come to the attention of Child Welfare Services not as a victim, but as a parent who was not able to protect their child. Research from the Domestic Violence and Children: Analysis and Recommendations Study indicates that between 3.3 million and 10 million children in the United States are exposed to Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence each year. It is estimated that 70% of men who abuse their female partners also abuse their children. Children in homes where domestic violence occurs have a greater than 1500% higher risk of being seriously neglected and physically or sexually abused. For more information on this topic and how it relates to child welfare, please visit the Child Welfare Information Gateway's section on Domestic Violence:

  • Target population: Victims of Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence and their children
  • Services/types that fit: Outpatient, day treatment, and residential services in individual or group formats
  • Delivered by: Mental health professionals or trained paraprofessionals
  • In order to be included: Program must specifically target victims of domestic violence and their children, or be designed to address the needs of this population
  • In order to be rated: There must be research evidence (as specified by the Scientific Rating Scale) that examines outcomes for victims and/or children, such as reductions in domestic violence and abuse, improvements in well-being, and changes in symptom levels, behaviors, and/or functioning
Downloadable Topic Area Summary

Programs in this Topic Area

The programs listed below have been reviewed by the CEBC and, if appropriate, been rated using the Scientific Rating Scale.

Two Programs with a Scientific Rating of 2 - Supported by Research Evidence:

  • Child-Parent Psychotherapy (CPP)
    Children age 0-5, who have experienced a trauma, and their caregivers
  • Community Advocacy Project, The (CAP)
    Designed for and tested with survivors of domestic abuse who have utilized shelters. Can be expanded to non-shelter users.

Three Programs with a Scientific Rating of 3 - Promising Research Evidence:

Two Programs with a Scientific Rating of NR - Not able to be Rated:

Why was this topic chosen by the Advisory Committee?

The Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence: Services for Victims and their Children topic area is relevant to child welfare for multiple reasons. First, child welfare agencies recognize the complexity of the co-occurrence of domestic/intimate partner violence and child abuse. Second, it is known that the children who witness domestic violence face significant risks, including experiencing other abuses in the home and exhibiting behavioral, emotional, and physical health related challenges. Children who are exposed to domestic violence often present with depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, anger, guilt, fear, and violence towards peers. Third, women who experience domestic/intimate partner violence are more likely to experience depression, substance abuse, and demonstrate inadequate coping skills. Abused women also experience a disconnection from family, friends, and service providers. All of the issues that affect these women and children are important to address, as well as the potentially negative impact on the mother/child relationship.

Deborah Reeves, MSW
Former CEBC Advisory Committee Member

Topic Expert

The Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence: Services for Victims and their Children topic area was added in 2007. Jeffrey L. Edleson, PhD was the topic expert and was involved in identifying and rating any of the programs with an original load date in 2007 (as found on the bottom of the program's page on the CEBC) or others loaded earlier and added to this topic area when it launched. The topic area has grown over the years and any programs added since 2007 were identified by CEBC staff, the Scientific Panel, and/or the Advisory Committee. For these programs, Dr. Edleson was not involved in identifying or rating them.