San Francisco Launches New Program to Identify High Risk Domestic Violence Cases in the Bayview District (17-087)

Today, the City and County of San Francisco is launching a new program in the Bayview District to better identify domestic violence victims at high risk of death or serious injury and connect them to services.

The Office of the Mayor, San Francisco Police Department, District Attorney’s Office, Department on the Status of Women, Bayview YMCA, La Casa de las Madres, and Glide Foundation are partnering on the Bayview Domestic Violence High Risk Program, which is funded by a grant from the federal Office of Violence Against Women. Using a screening tool developed by researchers who have identified high risk factors in domestic violence cases, first responder police officers will ask domestic violence victims a series of 11 questions.

Victims who answer a certain number of questions positively will be connected by phone with a domestic violence advocate from the La Casa de las Madres hotline. The use of a similar protocol in other parts of the country has resulted in increased numbers of domestic violence victims connecting to services, and decreased numbers of domestic violence homicides “There is no room for domestic violence in San Francisco,” said Mayor Edwin M. Lee. “The well-being and safety of our communities is paramount. We must continue to make the investments and deploy new tools to make these crimes non-existent in our City. With the collaboration of SFPD and our community-based partners, we are one step closer to solving this dangerous problem.” “Police officers who respond to domestic violence incidents are uniquely situated to connect victims to services,” said Police Chief William Scott.

“We are excited to be piloting this program in the Bayview and believe it will save lives.” Bayview Station has been chosen to launch the Pilot Program as it is the police district with one of the highest rates of reporting domestic violence incidents to the police.

If the Bayview pilot succeeds, San Francisco hopes to eventually implement the program citywide. “We were able to eliminate domestic violence homicides in San Francisco from 2010-2014, and we hope this project will be another tool we can use to get back to zero domestic violence homicides in our City,” said Dr. Emily Murase, Director of the Department on the Status of Women. To support this work, the City and County of San Francisco received a $750,000 grant from the Department of Justice, Office of Violence Against Women’s Improving Criminal Justice Responses to Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking Grant Program (formerly known as the Grants to Encourage Arrest and Enforcement of Protection Orders Program) CONTACT: Minouche Kandel, Director of Women’s Policy, San Francisco Department on the Status of Women; 415.252.3203 (work); 415-572-6482 (cell), [email protected]

News Release