Review of the Family Violence Information Sharing Scheme

Review of Family Violence Information Sharing Scheme (RCFV Recommendation 5)
Professor Jude McCulloch, Professor JaneMaree Maher, Dr Kate Fitz-Gibbon, Associate Professor Marie Segrave, Dr Kathryn Benier, Ms Kate Burns, Dr Jasmine McGowan and Ms Kate Thomas
Project contact: Dr Jasmine McGowan

Hearing the Voices of those accessing Family Violence Services in the new Information Sharing Regimes

The Centre for Gender and Family Violence Prevention team of researchers at Monash have been contracted by Family Safety Victoria to conduct an independent review of the new family violence Information Sharing Scheme, which commenced on 26 February 2018. The Review will consider any adverse impacts or unintended consequences of the scheme, as well as make recommendations to improve its operation.

As part of the review we are conducting interviews and peer support focus groups with women who have been affected by family violence. Hearing the voices of women and learning how they view and feel about changes to information sharing laws is an important part of this project.

We are seeking women who might be willing to share their experiences about current information sharing practices within the Victorian family violence system. We want to hear from women about their views and hopes around making the system safer. Women’s details will be kept totally confidential: they are able to participate as part of a focus group or by individual interview, which can also be conducted by phone. To recognise women’s time, expertise and resources in participating, they will be offered a $50 voucher.

If women are interested in participating, they are invited to make contact with the Monash research team by emailing JaneMaree Maher janemaree.maher@monash.eduAny questions and queries about participation can be answered at that time. If services would like more information, or would be interested in focus groups, please also get in touch.


We want to hear from you about the Family Violence Information Sharing Scheme.

The Monash Gender and Family Violence Prevention Centre are contracted by Family Safety Victoria to conduct an independent Review of the Family Violence Information Sharing Scheme (FVISS). The scheme is part of the broader reforms recommended by the Royal Commission into Family Violence designed to better protect women and children and hold perpetrators to account. The Review will consider any adverse impacts or unintended consequences of the FVISS as well as make recommendations to improve its operation. The findings of the Review will be tabled in Parliament in 2020 and may impact on family violence information sharing practice, policy and legislation. Your participation is vitally important and we encourage you to have a say. If you have questions about the Review please contact Dr Jasmine McGowan [].

This information is relevant to the following workforces:

  • Victoria Police
  • Child Protection
  • Specialist women’s family violence case management services
  • Specialist men’s family violence services
  • Child FIRST
  • Sexual assault services for victim/survivors
  • Victims of crime case management services
  • Correctional services
  • Victim Support Agency
  • Offender rehabilitation and reintegration services and programs
  • Prisoner services or programs provider
  • Magistrates' Court or Children’s Court
  • Risk Assessment and Management Panel (RAMP) member
  • Refuge
  • Alcohol and other drug services
  • Commission for Children and Young People
  • DHHS Housing
  • Disability Services Commissioner
  • Family violence service – counselling
  • Family violence service – therapeutic response program
  • Financial Counselling Program
  • Homelessness service – access point, outreach or accommodation services
  • Integrated Family Service
  • Justice Health – department
  • Justice health – service
  • Maternal and Child Health Service, including telephone service
  • Mental health service
  • Out of home care service
  • Sexually abusive behaviour treatment service
  • Tenancy Advice and Advocacy Program
  • Youth Justice – department
  • Youth Justice – community support service or program


We are now conducting (a second survey) of workers’ attitudes and practises in relation to family violence information sharing. This survey is important to demonstrate the impact the FVISS is having on your work, your organisation, keeping women and children safe and holding perpetrators to account. We encourage you to participate in the survey. It will take approximately 20 minutes to complete. The link to the survey is:

Please note that a survey is also being conducted in August 2019 in relation to the Child Information Sharing (CIS) Scheme. You may be invited to respond to that survey, which will be conducted by ACIL Allen. The surveys relate to separate evaluations of the two information sharing schemes.


We are now conducting interviews with managers in organisations. These will help us to understand the impacts of the FVISS and ways that its operation can be improved. Please contact Kate Burns [] if you wish to participate in an interview.

Focus Groups  

We are conducting a number of Focus Groups in August and September 2019 to capture experiences of how the FVISS is being implemented and operating. Your insights are valuable and will help to better understand how the scheme is working and how it might be improved. If you would like to participate in one of the Focus Groups, please email [] to register for your preferred date, or for more information.

Focus Group Details

Where: Monash Conference Centre - Melbourne CBD (Level 7 or 11,  30 Collins Street,  Melbourne, VIC 3000)


  • Focus Group 1: 4-5.30pm, Thursday 8 August 2019
  • Focus Group 2: 9-10.30am, Friday 23 August, 2019 (Level 11)
  • Focus Group 3: 9-10.30am, Tuesday 3 September, 2019 (Level 7)
  • Focus Group 4: 3:30 -5pm, Tuesday 17 September, 2019 (Level 11)
  • Focus Group 5: 3-4:30pm, Monday 7 October, 2019 (Level 7)

Previous stages of the Review

The Gender and Family Violence team of researchers at Monash University have been contracted by Family Safety Victoria (FSV) to conduct the Review. There are a number of phases to the Review. Read more about this project and the first stages of the Review here.