Standards for public agencies

2020 Edition

Domestic Violence Services (PA-DV) 7: Promoting Child Well-Being

The agency works with survivors to support and promote the well-being of their children.
NA The agency does not serve survivors who have children.




Individuals who receive Domestic Violence Services gain a sense of empowerment, improve their well-being, and increase their ability to live safely and independently.
Full Implementation, Outstanding Performance
A rating of (1) indicates that the agency's practices fully meet the standard and reflect a high level of capacity.  
  • All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, with rare or no exceptions: exceptions do not impact service quality or agency performance. 
Substantial Implementation, Good Performance
A rating of (2) indicates that an agency's infrastructure and practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement.
  • The majority of the standards requirements have been met and the basic framework required by the standard has been implemented. 
  • Minor inconsistencies and not yet fully developed practices are noted; however, these do not significantly impact service quality or agency performance.

Partial Implementation, Concerning Performance
A rating of (3) indicates that the agency's observed infrastructure and/or practices require significant improvement.  

  • The agency has not implemented the basic framework of the standard but instead has in place only part of this framework.  
  • Omissions or exceptions to the practices outlined in the standard occur regularly, or practices are implemented in a cursory or haphazard manner.  
  • Service quality or agency functioning may be compromised.  
  • Capacity is at a basic level.
Unsatisfactory Implementation or Performance
A rating of (4) indicates that implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all.  
  • The agency’s observed service delivery infrastructure and practices are weak or non-existent; or show signs of neglect, stagnation, or deterioration.
Self-Study EvidenceOn-Site EvidenceOn-Site Activities
  • Procedures for referring children to services
  • Policy prohibiting corporal punishment
  • Procedures for evaluating educational needs and collaborating with schools, if applicable
  • Procedures for obtaining clearance to participate in athletic activities
  • Community resource and referral list
  • Interviews may include:
    1. Program director
    2. Relevant personnel
    3. Survivors, and their children if appropriate
  • Review case records


PA-DV 7.01

To promote child well-being, the agency supports survivors’ efforts to care for and nurture their children, and:
  1. offers age-appropriate programming that meets children’s social, emotional, cognitive, and physical needs; or
  2. links children with appropriate services offered by other community providers.
Examples: Appropriate programming and services can include play groups, recreational activities, educational activities, counseling, and therapeutic services.

Fundamental Practice

PA-DV 7.02

To promote positive parenting practices, the agency:
  1. establishes a policy that prohibits corporal punishment of children by parents, personnel, and safe home providers;
  2. ensures all parents, personnel, and safe home providers are informed of this policy; and
  3. promotes, and educates parents, personnel, and safe home providers about, alternatives to corporal punishment.


PA-DV 7.03

Agencies providing shelter or safe home services evaluate the educational status and needs of school-age children and youth and:
  1. inform survivors of their children’s educational rights;
  2. help survivors coordinate educational services with relevant school districts; and
  3. assist children and youth to stay current with the curricula.
NA The agency does not provide shelter or safe home services.

Fundamental Practice

PA-DV 7.04

The agency evaluates children and youth for their ability to participate in athletic activities and obtains: 
  1. a written, signed permission slip from their parents or legal guardians; 
  2. a medical records release; and/or
  3. a signed document from a qualified medical professional stating that the child or youth is physically capable of participating.
NA The agency does not offer athletic activities.


PA-DV 7.05

When a survivor’s children are involved with child protective services, and with the survivor’s permission, the agency collaborates with the child protective services agency to:
  1. provide needed education about the dynamics of domestic violence;
  2. ensure that family problems are addressed in a cohesive and comprehensive manner; and
  3. promote the best interests of both survivors and their children.
NA The agency does not serve survivors whose children are involved with child protective services.