Program personnel have the competency and support needed to provide services and meet the needs of survivors.
Competency can be demonstrated through education, training, or experience, including both work and life experience. Support can be provided through supervision or other learning activities to improve understanding or skill development in specific areas.
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All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, as indicated by full implementation of the practices outlined in the Practice Standards.
Practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards; e.g.,
With some exceptions, staff (direct service providers, supervisors, and program managers) possess the required qualifications, including education, experience, training, skills, temperament, etc., but the integrity of the service is not compromised; or
Supervisors provide additional support and oversight, as needed, to the few staff without the listed qualifications; or
Most staff who do not meet educational requirements are seeking to obtain them; or
With few exceptions, staff have received required training, including applicable specialized training; or
Training curricula are not fully developed or lack depth; or
Training documentation is consistently maintained and kept up-to-date with some exceptions; or
A substantial number of supervisors meet the requirements of the standard, and the organization provides training and/or consultation to improve competencies when needed; or
With few exceptions, caseload sizes are consistently maintained as required by the standards or as required by internal policy when caseload has not been set by a standard; or
Workloads are such that staff can effectively accomplish their assigned tasks and provide quality services and are adjusted as necessary; or
Specialized services are obtained as required by the standards.
Practice requires significant improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards. Service quality or program functioning may be compromised; e.g.,
A significant number of staff (direct service providers, supervisors, and program managers) do not possess the required qualifications, including education, experience, training, skills, temperament, etc.; and as a result, the integrity of the service may be compromised; or
Job descriptions typically do not reflect the requirements of the standards, and/or hiring practices do not document efforts to hire staff with required qualifications when vacancies occur; or
Supervisors do not typically provide additional support and oversight to staff without the listed qualifications; or
A significant number of staff have not received required training, including applicable specialized training; or
Training documentation is poorly maintained; or
A significant number of supervisors do not meet the requirements of the standard, and the organization makes little effort to provide training and/or consultation to improve competencies; or
There are numerous instances where caseload sizes exceed the standards' requirements or the requirements of internal policy when a caseload size is not set by the standard; or
Workloads are excessive, and the integrity of the service may be compromised; or
Specialized staff are typically not retained as required and/or many do not possess the required qualifications; or
Specialized services are infrequently obtained as required by the standards.
Implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards.
Table of contents of training curricula
Procedures or other documentation relevant to continuity of care and case assignment
Sample job descriptions from across relevant job categories
Documentation tracking staff completion of required trainings and/or competencies
Caseload size requirements set by policy, regulation, or contract, when applicable
Documentation of current caseload size per worker
Interviews may include:
Review personnel files
Direct service personnel are qualified by a bachelor’s degree in social work or a comparable human service field and/or appropriate training and experience.
Personnel degree qualifications should be appropriate to the services being provided.
The program director has a bachelor’s degree and two years' experience working with survivors, at a minimum.
The individual who has administrative responsibility for shelter operations has:
at least a bachelor’s degree or equivalent and two years' experience in human services; or
substantial experience in human services, including at least two years' experience in shelter services.
NAThe organization does not provide shelter services.
All direct service personnel are trained on, or demonstrate competency in:
empowering and communicating empathetically with survivors;
assessing risks and safety;
developing safety plans;
recognizing and addressing barriers to escaping abuse or accessing services;
recognizing the presence of medical or health problems;
recognizing and responding to the co-occurrence of domestic violence, substance use conditions, and mental health conditions;
managing stress; and
setting appropriate boundaries with survivors.
When the organization serves military or veteran populations, it is essential that staff have the competencies needed to effectively support and assist service members, veterans, and their families, including sufficient knowledge regarding: military culture, values, policies, structure, terminology, unique barriers to service, traumas and signature injuries, co-occurring conditions, effective and evidence-based interventions, applicable regulations, benefits, and other relevant issues. When providers possess the requisite military competency, they are capable of supporting improved communication and more effective care. Signature injuries and co-occurring conditions include post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, traumatic brain injury (TBI), and substance use. Personnel serving military and veteran populations should have the competencies to identify, assess, and develop a treatment plan for these injuries and conditions.
Personnel providing services in a group setting are trained on, or demonstrate competency in:
engaging and motivating group members;
educating group members;
understanding group dynamics;
leading discussions; and
facilitating group activities.
NAThe organization does not provide services in a group setting.
Personnel who work directly with children, or with survivors who have children, are trained on, or demonstrate competency in:
possible effects of witnessing domestic violence;
collaborating with child protective services; and
non-violent discipline methods.
NAThe organization does not serve survivors who have children.
There is at least one person certified in basic first aid and CPR on duty at each program site, at any time the program is in operation.
NAThe organization does not provide shelter services.
The organization minimizes the number of workers assigned to the survivor over the course of their contact with the organization by:
assigning a worker at intake or early in the contact; and
avoiding the arbitrary or indiscriminate reassignment of direct service personnel.
Employee workloads support the achievement of survivor outcomes and are regularly reviewed.