The Response to Conjugal Violence in Substance Abuse Treatment Settings.Report as inadecuate

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The linkage between conjugal violence and substance abuse is well established. The evidence suggests that little coordination exists among the therapeutic communities positioned to treat co-existing problems. A survey was conducted in Quebec with professionals representing 57 substance abuse treatment centers, 38 of which were public. Questions were asked about their beliefs with respect to conjugal violence; the amount of linkage with conjugal violence intervention milieu; and what obstacles were most important in reducing the level of treatment coordination between the two sectors. Results indicated that little contact occurs between the two milieus and that competition for resources and ideological differences are perceived as important obstacles preventing greater cooperation. More centers engage in direct intervention for female victims than for male perpetrators. A tendency to underestimate the prevalence of concomitant problems and to attribute responsibility for violence onto the woman was noted. These findings are consistent with previous surveys that underscored the segmented approach to these problems and the continued lack of expertise in conjugal violence within substance abuse treatment settings. Innovative strategies are needed to better encourage greater cooperation and integration between treatment communities for co-existing substance abuse and conjugal violence. (Contains 14 references.) (JDM)

Descriptors: Adults, Agency Cooperation, Community Health Services, Counseling, Counselor Attitudes, Family Violence, Foreign Countries, Influences, Interpersonal Relationship, Intervention, Prevention, Substance Abuse

Author: Brown, Thomas G.; Caplan, Thomas; Seraganian, Peter; Werk, Annette


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