“Establishing the Connection” examined the complex intersections between alcohol/other drug use and the severity of, or vulnerability to, sexual violence and revictimisation. The project aimed to build the capacity of the sexual assault and alcohol and other drug (AoD) sectors to respond more effectively to the needs of affected women and their families.
This is a 12-month, qualitative project involving a detailed literature review, consultation interviews with clinicians and other stakeholders working in the sexual assault and AoD sectors, and a forum to bring together the practice knowledge and needs of both sectors and form collaborations for linked service responses and further work in this area. Findings from the research informed the development of shared practice guidelines to assist service providers in Victoria with the identification, assessment, response and secondary consultation or referral of woman and families affected by co-occurring sexual abuse victimisation and substance use issues. This project brought together research and service provider organisations in the fields of sexual abuse/violence and alcohol and other drugs. It helped to build capacity and strengthen important links between researchers and service providers in both sectors.
This project provided evidence and strategies to assist sexual assault and alcohol and other drug services respond more effectively to women and their families affected by sexual assault and substance use.
Principal chief investigator:
Dr Rebecca Jenkinson, Research Fellow, Australian Institute of Family Studies (AIFS).
Ms Mary Stathopoulos, Senior Research Officer, AIFS; and Dr Antonia Quadara, Research Fellow, AIFS.
Research partners / team members:
A/Prof Daryl Higgins, Deputy Director (Research), AIFS.
Ms Liz Wall, Research Officer, AIFS.
Ms Jane Vanderstoel, Convenor, Centres Against Sexual Assault (CASA) Forum.
Mr Trevor King, Director of Programs, Therapeutic Services, UnitingCare ReGen.
Sexual assault survivors need more clinical support (Media release)