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Institute for Family Violence Studies

Institute for Family Violence Studies
Karen Oehme, J. D.
Program Director

College of Social Work
C2307 University Center
Tallahassee, FL 32306-2570

Contact Info.
phone number(850)644-6303
fax number(850)644-8331
Map of Campus


Family Violence Online Tutorials

Florida State University School of Social Work

Institute for Family Violence Studies


A Competency Based Training Manual


Community Mental Health Center Staff

The effects of domestic violence have long been associated with many mental health issues, including depression, substance abuse, and suicidal tendencies. In fact, studies have shown that domestic violence is often a precursor to many mental health problems such as those mentioned above. Therefore, in order to effectively assist clients, it is important that community mental health counselors correctly identify those who are victims of domestic violence and abuse. These clients will require special assistance and additional services.

Domestic Violence: A Competency-Based Training Manual for Community Mental Health Center Staff was developed to help community mental health counselors identify their clients affected by domestic abuse. In addition to chapters on the dynamics of domestic violence, overcoming rural barriers, and utilizing community resources, it contains information specific to the effects of domestic violence on those with mental health problems and important information on the interaction between substance abuse and domestic violence. The heart of the manual teaches professionals to spot the signs of abuse, how to ask a potential victim about abuse, and how to assist victims with special services.

The Community Mental Health Counselor Training Pilot Project was initiated in January, 2000. Apalachee Center for Human Services, a local mental health counseling agency with outreach programs in 6 other counties served as the pilot's focus. Counselors were provided with training and after a six-month follow-up were found to have significantly increased their identification of clients who were also victims of domestic violence an abuse. With sustained funding the Institute hopes to continue providing these much needed training events and to expand the opportunities for training to agencies across Florida.

· Florida's Women, Infants, & Children (WIC) and Other Nutrition ProgramStaff
 Meals on Wheels Volunteers & Other Elder Services Staff
·  Florida's Animal Abuse Investigators