DRIVE: The Wheels Come Off

Quoting from the web site of the Drive Project, “Drive is an intensive intervention that works with high-harm and serial perpetrators to challenge behaviour and prevent abuse. A few years ago I wrote a review of domestic abuse perpetrator programmes, UK DV Perpetrator Programmes – Part 1. Drive is a new one. In December 2019, the University of Bristol published their evaluation of a three-year pilot of Drive. This 189 page evaluation, led by Marianne Hester, can be found here, with a executive summary here. It is claimed to be, “the largest evaluation of a perpetrator intervention ever carried out in the UK, and the largest with a randomised control design”. In this article I deconstruct this evaluation.

I hope the reader will be patient as it is necessary to go into details. Documents of this sort are cleverly scripted. Penetrating the façade to expose the reality beneath requires some labour. Let me give you the punchline: the claimed benefits of Drive are fraudulent.

This article is structured as follows,

  • The subjects of the Drive pilot;
  • An outline of the Drive process;
  • The structure of the Drive pilot;
  • A summary of the evaluation’s key claims for the benefits of Drive;
  • My critical appraisal of these claims, addressing,
    • Assessed changes in victimisation;
    • Assessed changes in perpetrator behaviour;
    • Repeat MARAC* evidence;
    • Police data evidence.
    • Drive-DASH Changes
  • Cost of Drive
  • Conclusions

*MARAC = Multi-Agency Risk Assessment Conference, the mechanism whereby all relevant agencies such as police, social services, DV experts, etc., come together to discuss a case and agree action.

The Subjects of the Drive Pilot

  • 94% of the perpetrators were men.
  • 97% of the victims were women.

The evaluation is based upon the presumption that there is a clear and unambiguous division of these couples into a perpetrator and a victim. Statistically this is unlikely. In many cases both parties will have been comparably abusive, but this is a reality which is not allowed to surface in the Drive process or its evaluation. In some cases it might even be that the victim and perpetrator have been reversed.

The designated perpetrators in the pilot were not a random cross-section of the public by any stretch of the imagination. Their characteristics were (using the terminology of the evaluation),

  • 62% had high or excessive mental health issues
  • 40% were temporarily homeless or sofa surfing, plus another 7% actually homeless
  • 34% had high or excessive alcohol usage
  • 28% had high or excessive drug use
  • 21% had planned or attempted suicide
  • Where contact was made with the service user, 61% had financial difficulties, 43% employment difficulties, and 62% poor physical health.

The DRIVE Process

The Drive process is driven by “case managers”. Who these “case managers” are, and what their affiliations might be, was not specified.

The important thing to grasp is that Drive is predominantly NOT about working with the perpetrator; it is predominantly about multi-agency working without perpetrator involvement. It implements a system of surveillance (referred to as “disruption”).

The Drive process is described thus,

Drive focuses on reducing harm and increasing victim safety by combining disruption, diversionary support and behaviour change interventions alongside the crucial protective work of victims’ services.”

The Drive process divides into “direct” and “indirect” work, the latter does not involve the perpetrator’s involvement with the case manager.

Direct work comprises what is denoted above as “diversionary support and behaviour change interventions”. This is billed as a bespoke service, driven by the case manager according to the needs of the service user (perpetrator). As such it is a mixture of things whose purpose is to change the perpetrator’s behaviour, e.g.,   

Case managers threaded a delicate balance between building trust, setting boundaries and critically challenging service users. The effectiveness of this hinged on the quality of the case manager-service user relationship, the presence of meaningful levers to engage (e.g., forms of statutory compulsion or perceived benefits to the service user) and information sharing on service user behaviour from other agencies, in particular the IDVA service.”

This would appear to include, in some cases, a rather traditional approach, e.g.,

‘Counselling’ from a trained Domestic Violence Prevention Programme (DVPP) facilitator”

recalling that all accredited DVPP’s are essentially Duluth. However, the evaluation also notes, perhaps more encouragingly, that,

Work on impulse control and emotional regulation stood out in interviews with service users.”

However, the direct work was far less significant than the indirect work in the pilot – and, one presumes, this would also be the case in more widespread application of Drive. Do note this crucial fact,

  • 84% of the work with perpetrators was indirect.

Indirect work is that referred to as “disruption” above. My description of this “indirect work” as a system of surveillance is justified by the following quote from the evaluation,

Some notable examples of indirect work oriented to disruption and risk management were:

  • Information sharing to heighten risk awareness – while information sharing might be considered a ‘pathway to disruption’ rather than the disruption itself, it is a critical component in disruption activity.
  • Providing the service user’s address to police or social services – case managers will often have done significantly more research on service users than other agencies have been able to. It can be as simple as providing an address to police or social services when it was not previously known, which can open an avenue for disruption work.
  • MAPPA referrals* – in cases where the likelihood of behaviour change in the short to medium term was judged to be very low and the risk remained high, referrals to MAPPA were made.
  • Referrals to social services…..referrals to social services can serve as a key disruption strategy by initiating a home visit.
  • Breach without reliance on victim-survivor to report – for example, in one case, the service user was making repeated calls to the victim-survivor’s address in breach of his restraining order. The victim-survivor was too scared to make a complaint, in part due to complicity in the abuse from other family members. The case manager notified the housing provider and requested that they call the police if the service user attended the property. The housing provider agreed and did call the police.”

* MAPPA stands for Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements. It is the process through which various agencies such as the police, the Prison Service and Probation work together to protect the public by managing the risks posed by violent and sexual offenders living in the community.

There are three categories of MAPPA offenders. Category One comprises all registered sexual offenders. Category Two comprises violent offenders who have been sentenced to 12 months or more, or to detention in hospital, and who are now living in the community subject to Probation supervision. Category Three comprises other dangerous offenders who have committed an offence in the past and who are considered to pose a risk of serious harm to the public. My understanding is that MAPPA is applicable only to people who have been convicted, so referral of Drive “service uses” who have not been convicted to MAPPA would be illegal. The MAPPA system is overtly a surveillance system.

I have a concern that invoking MAPPA for domestic abusers is itself an abuse of the system, as MAPPA is intended to be used only when there is a danger to the wider public.

In summary, the Drive process consists mainly of a case manager who keeps a watching brief on the perpetrator and ensures that all relevant agencies are informed of any developments so that, together, the system as a whole puts a tight net around the “service user”. Clearly, this is not so much a service to the “perpetrator” as an extension of the existing processes of monitoring and external control. It is a system of surveillance.

The Structure of the Pilot

There are four distinct groups of people involved in the pilot of Drive, two groups of perpetrators (Drive pilot and control) and two corresponding groups of victims. Data from the victims were obtained via IDVA support to the victims. (IDVA = Independent Domestic Violence Advisor). The numbers in each group were,

  • Perpetrators (“service uses”) within the Drive pilot, 506;
  • The victims associated with the service users, of which 104 had IDVA support;
  • A large number of perpetrators were initially identified as potential controls, but this eventually reduced to 353 who also had IDVA support for the associated victims.

The Evaluation’s Claims for DRIVE

Now let’s look at what the evaluation claims to be Drive’s achievements. The first Key Finding is stated as being,

The number of Drive service users using each type of domestic violence and abuse (DVA) behaviour reduced substantially. For example, the use of high-risk…

  • physical abuse reduced by 82%;
  • sexual abuse reduced by 88%,
  • harassment and stalking behaviours reduced by 75%;
  • and jealous and controlling behaviours reduced by 73%.

Well, that sounds pretty impressive, doesn’t it? The second of the Key Findings is,

For both the Drive-associated victims-survivors group and the victims-survivors in the control group, IDVAs perceived a significant or moderate reduction in risk in over three quarters of cases over the period of the intervention. The overall trend was a reduction in risk for both groups, with a stronger reduction for Drive associated victims-survivors:

  • IDVAs assessed risk as ‘permanently eliminated’ at the point of case closure in almost 3 times as many cases for victims-survivors in the Drive associated group (11%) compared to those in the control group (4%).
  • Drive victim-survivors were more likely (82%) to experience a moderate or significant reduction in risk than their control counterparts (78%).”

Now some concern begins. If both the Drive group and the control group showed reductions, was the improvement attributable to Drive significant? It was not, as we shall see.

The third Key Finding is,

MARAC data shows that Drive helped to reduce high-risk perpetration including by serial and repeat perpetrators, and this was sustained for a year after the case was closed: Drive service users appeared at MARAC less often (mean= 2.7 times) than perpetrators in the control group (mean= 3.3 times). This difference was statistically significant.”

The explicit mention that the difference due to Drive was statistically significant in this case only highlights the absence of this crucial claim in the previous Key Finding. But the MARAC data has other problems, as we will see.

My Critique (1): Assessed Changes in Victimisation

The victims themselves do not directly provide the data on victimisation and its changes over time. Rather these data are obtained by “Analysis of Insights data, completed by IDVAs”. The evaluation tells us that this, “showed that similar trends were observed for both Drive and control victim-survivor groups in the reduction of abuse experienced from intake to exit, and these changes were statistically significant”. Note that the statistical significance of the changes in assessed victimisation over time is not a measure of the effectiveness of the Drive process (though one may suspect the authors were hoping to create that impression). Only the difference between the Drive group and the control group provides a measure of the effectiveness of the Drive process – that’s what a control group is for. Within a minute or so of first looking at the evaluation report I spotted Figure 24, reproduced below, which is what leads to the unravelling of the edifice of misdirection presented as “evaluation”…

The immediately obvious feature of Figure 24 is that there seems to be little difference between the Drive group and the control group, either at “Intake” (before the Drive process occurs) or at “Exit” (after the Drive process, typically lasting about 10 months).

The crucial feature of Figure 24 is that it reveals that victimisation reduces to far lower levels than at intake for the control group with no Drive intervention. The report does not enlighten us as to why this might be. Possibly it is something to do with the IDVAs influence, but I need not speculate upon this.

The question which arises is: if one looks at the difference between the Drive group and the control group as regards the reduction in victimisation, are these differences statistically significant. Despite the Key Findings of the Executive Summary choosing not to tell us, the report itself does. On pages 70/71 regression analyses are described and the conclusion is stated clearly,

Results indicated that the difference in changes of the four DVA behaviours from intake to exit were not statistically different between the Drive and control victim-survivor groups as indicated by p-values (see regression results in Appendix 4, Section 1).”

I invite you to look back at the wording of the second of the Key Findings, quoted above, which gives the opposite impression. That Key Finding is profoundly dishonest. If that were published in a peer reviewed journal, and its mendacious nature discovered, the journal would be obliged to withdraw the paper and the authors would be treated with some suspicion thereafter.

This is an example of a familiar phenomenon in advocacy research of this kind, which now infects all of social science. What is written in an Abstract or a Summary or a Conclusions section can be rather different from what one finds within the body of the text. It seems that the authors salve their consciences by “fessing up” in the text – which almost no one will read – but the desired spin is presented in the briefer material which people do read.

My Critique (2): Assessed Changes in Perpetrators’ Behaviour

How are changes in perpetrator behaviour quantified? This is revealed, rather hidden away in footnote 16,

Case managers assess DVA behaviour from a variety of sources including service user, from victim-survivor (through IDVA support) and other information from multi-agency partners such as police, children’s social services, probation etc.”

In short, the case managers provide the measures of perpetrator behaviour. One may have a concern over the objectivity of this.

Recall the first Key Finding, above, and the apparently impressive reduction in perpetration behaviours, between 73% and 88%. Looking back at Figure 24, above, this no longer appears so impressive as, according to the IDVAs’ assessment of victimisation, there were statistically equivalent reductions without Drive intervention. Unfortunately, there appears to be no equivalent of the case managers’ assessments of perpetration behaviours applied to the control group. This is very unfortunate indeed because, given that the IDVA data of Figure 24 turned out to indicate no significant benefit of Drive, one is naturally inclined to expect the same would be true for the case managers’ assessments (necessarily so if the measures were truly objective and reasonably accurate, as they would be measuring the same thing).

The only indication of the effectiveness of Drive intervention that is discernible from the case managers’ assessments of perpetrator behaviour changes relates to the “direct” element of Drive alone. Out of those perpetrators subject to “direct” work, 54% engaged with case managers, 31% did not engage and 15% were partially engaged. Figure 23, reproduced below, compares behaviour changes for these engaged, not engaged, or partially engaged, perpetrators. Following Figure 24 we are no longer impressed by the reductions per se, but are only interested in whether “engagement” results in greater reductions. There is no consistent indication that it does, though one must be mindful that all these perpetrators were potentially subject to the “indirect” work implicit within the Drive process.

Moreover, whether the couple were living together or not overturned any apparent benefit from “direct” support, quote “those service users who received one or more ‘direct support’ actions from the case managers were more likely to reduce high physical violence than those who did not receive direct support. This finding changed when adjusting for living situation, showing that direct support could increase physical violence. The other DVA behaviours showed no association with ‘direct support’ in the adjusted model.”

In summary, we can conclude nothing as regards the efficacy of Drive from the case managers’ assessments of perpetrator behaviour changes.

My Critique (3): Repeat MARAC Evidence

The evaluation puts considerable emphasis on the frequency of appearance of service users at MARACs during or subsequent to Drive intervention. However, some serious questions arise. Figure 25, reproduced below, purports to give the percentage of Drive service users who appeared at MARACs during or after Drive.

The most obvious, and most suspicious, absence from Figure 25 is the control data. There must be available data on control group re-appearances at MARACs over the same periods of time. Why are these data not shown? Without them we again cannot conclude anything about the effectiveness of Drive in reducing the need for repeat MARACs as regards the whole cohort of the pilot study.

Moreover, I have a serious doubt that the data plotted in Figure 25 is meaningful at all, even for the Drive group. The sub-group used consisted of the 184 service users from “Site 2”. After 6 months there were a total of 15 service users who re-appeared at MARAC, hence giving the 8% figure (i.e., 15/184) in Figure 25. Now consider this quote relating to the figure for 12 months,

Data for 12 months after case closure was available for 64% of service users (n=117). The number of service users who appeared back in MARAC at 12 months post-intervention, was 12 service users (6%) showing an overall reduction in re-appearance by service users at MARAC during this period.”

To obtain the 6% figure, 12 has been expressed as a percentage of 184. But actually 12 repeat MARACs were found from a reduced number of cases of only 117, i.e., 10%. This is a minor issue, except for what it implies regarding the figure used for “beyond 12 months”. Quote,

For 11% of service users (n=20) it was possible to calculate what their re-appearances were more than a year after case closure. Although this might not be representative of the service users as a whole for site 2, the number of service users who appeared back in MARAC after more than a year post-case-closure increased to 11% of service users.

This seems to be saying that data on repeat MARACS was found only for 20 of the original 184 service users. But worse, it implies that all 20 appeared at repeat MARACs! The 11% figure is obtained as 20/184, but actually 100% of those for which there was information appeared at repeat MARACs! Figure 25 is therefore grossly misleading at best.  

However, the third Key Finding refers to this, “control cases appeared slightly more frequently in MARAC (mean= 3.3 times) than those perpetrators who were allocated to Drive (mean=2.7 times). This difference was statistically significant (p<0.001).” The data on which those mean factors are based are not given, and it is unclear to me what they mean. My best guess is that they are averages only over those perpetrators who had repeat MARACs during the period in question, not over the whole Drive group even for “Site 2”.

Perhaps more simply, is it not reasonable to question the efficacy of a preventative process when service users need repeat MARACs during, or shortly after, the intervention, an average of 2.7 times?

My Critique (4): Police Data on Repeat Offending

I reproduce below Figures A5.3 and A5.4. Figure A5.3 gives the percentage of the group committing DV related incidents against time from intake, comparing the Drive group with the control. Figure A5.4 is the same but restricted to incidents that were designated as crimes by the police (“crimed”). Impressed? It’s hard to be. If there is zero improvement by 6 months, it is hard not to interpret the apparent improvement thereafter as statistical fluctuation. The stand-out feature of the police data, like the data from the IDVAs (Figure 24) and case managers (Figure 23) is that, with or without Drive, the frequency of offending diminishes rapidly anyway. So why bother with Drive?

My Critique (5): Drive-DASH Changes

The DASH-Safelives Domestic Abuse “RIC” (Risk Indicator Checklist) provides a score, from 24 questions, the higher the score the greater the assessed risk. A score of 14 or more is usually taken as “high risk”, sufficient to motivate a MARAC. This is a reasonable tool for assessing a potential victim’s risk.

As part of the Drive pilot, a modification of that standard tool was introduced which I address briefly here only because it seems so preposterous. While the proper DASH tool is completed by victims (with guidance), the Drive-DASH was completed by the case manager. This is very weird since the case managers did not even work with the victims but only with the perpetrators (and only a small proportion of them!). Moreover, the number of questions on the Drive-DASH was reduced between Year 1 and Years 2 and 3, rendering any comparison meaningless. Finally, there were many “not applicable/not known” responses and the number of these varied across time. In summary, any variation in the Drive-DASH score over time is totally meaningless – but this did not stop Figure 20 being included in the report.

Cost of Drive

The pilot cost £2,400 per perpetrator (hence £1.2M). This will reduce to about £2,000 per perpetrator in subsequent applications. The estimated cost per annum of delivering Drive in all PCC and police force areas across England and Wales is stated as £9M, although I don’t know how this relates to the approximately 76,000 MARACs cases which would suggest £152M.


(1) The Drive process is less a conventional DVPP and more a surveillance system.

(2) Perpetrator abusive behaviours reduced markedly over approximately one year for both the Drive group and the control group, for reasons unknown.

(3) Any changes in perpetrator behaviours, as assessed by IDVAs and attributable to Drive are not statistically significant.

(4) Direct support by Drive case managers had no beneficial effect on perpetrator behaviours when account was taken of living arrangements (together cf apart).

(5) It is disgraceful that the lack of statistically significant benefit in respect of (3) and (4) is hidden in the Executive Summary, the impression being given of substantial benefit.

(6) Police recorded incidents of abusive behaviours reduced markedly over approximately one year for both the Drive group and the control group. There was no difference between them for six months. Thereafter any difference is of unknown statistical significance.

(7) The “evaluation” is not a neutral academic evaluation but a marketing advertisement for Drive.

24 thoughts on “DRIVE: The Wheels Come Off

  1. Dick Morris

    William, if you have no objection, I intend to snip these pages, print them, and post the to my Conservative MP with a covering letter.

      1. Wise Manner

        This is what I’ve drafted. Are you happy with it?

        Dear Mr Davies,

        Can I draw your attention to the enclosed article by the blogger Mr William Collins? It examines the national programme “Drive”, which deals with alleged perpetrators of domestic violence. Drive attempts to reduce and eliminate re-offending by allocating managers to individuals in an attempt to help them control their alleged violent behaviour and, of course, ideally end it altogether.

        Mister Collins is an academic scientist, and used to “peer reviewing” the works other scientists might wish to have published. As I am sure you are aware, peer reviewing is the process whereby articles intended for publication in respected scientific journals are first scrutinised by others who have established reputations in the field with a view to filtering out those works that might be the work of cranks, or fraudsters, or, indeed, simply scientifically impossible. The process also, of course, helps governments and establishments avoid wasting their money on projects that will not do what they claim.

        Mister Collins has applied peer-reviewing processes to the paper produced by the Drive team and concluded that it does not pass scrutiny. It seems, indeed, that the claims made by the author of the paper are NOT borne out by the facts.

        Mister Collins writes:

        Cost of Drive
        The pilot cost £2,400 per perpetrator (hence £1.2M). This will reduce to about £2,000 per perpetrator in subsequent applications. The estimated cost per annum of delivering Drive in all PCC and police force areas across England and Wales is stated as £9M, although I don’t know how this relates to the approximately 76,000 MARACs cases which would suggest £152M.

        So, it seems that if this project continues, the cost to the taxpayer will be at least £9M p.a., and may be as much as £152M p.a.. Yet, according to the figures, it does not work.

        Surely, this money could be much better spent?

        Mr Davies, I urge you to read this fascinating investigation.

  2. paul parmenter

    Thank you again William for another revealing forensic dissection, showing that what you think you saw was just more smoke and mirrors.

    I cannot go nearly as deeply as you, but I find that a few basic questions can go a long way in assessing the validity and underlying agenda of these research projects. My starting point is to check on the authors. Needless to say, they invariably have a host of qualifications and publications to their name, that always look impressive – at least until you dig down a bit. In this case you don’t have to dig far to find some familiar themes.

    Marianne Hester: one of the editors of “Tackling Mens Violence in Families”. I searched in vain for the sister publication “Tackling Women’s Violence in Families”. If it exists, it is very well hidden.

    Nathan Eisenstadt’s professional profile states: “Building on my doctoral research on contemporary anarchist practices, I am interested in the tensions between discipline and freedom, and their relationship to equality, as enacted in radical and prefigurative spaces. In particular I am interested in the ways in which freedom-with-equality is enacted through particular disciplined practices and with what how communities respond to profound transgressions of collectively established modes of conduct – for example, rape, sexual assault and other forms of gender-based violence and abuse. This work draws on and sits between queer, anarchist and autonomous geographies, movement criticism around anti-/oppression and ‘community accountability’ and empirically grounded feminist governmentality scholarship.”

    Not having taken a degree in this bizarre language, I have absolutely no idea what any of that means. But the use of that one word “feminist” sets the red lights flashing and the alarm bells ringing. And bear in mind this is the only male on the Evaluation Team. I suppose that is to assure us of gender balance if we are stupid enough to believe it.

    Karen Morgan: research history heavily biased towards female victims.

    Sarah-Jane Walker: “currently works at the Centre for Gender Violence Research in the School for Policy Studies, University of Bristol. Sarah-Jane does research in gender-based violence, including domestic and sexual violence against women.”

    I am also aware that among academics, the phrase “gender-based violence” invariably means violence by males against females. If there is ever any violence by females against males that is gender based, it manages to remain invisible to the vast majority of professionals working in the field; at least to those in line for government grants. So I guess we are to conclude that it simply does not exist, hence is not a problem that ever needs addressing – or funding.

    The other two members of the Team do not have sufficient public profile to tell us anything useful.

    So not a group with any likelihood of showing a gender balanced approach.

    I also got as far as the discovery that the project “randomly” chose perpetrators that just happened to be 94% male, and victims that just happened to be 97% female. This is in flat contradiction of the numerous studies that have shown time and again that the sexes perpetrate IPV in roughly equal measures. But of course these groups were identified “via the MARAC referral pathway”. In other words they were drawn from a pool that had already been established under a system that works on the assumption that perpetrators are almost without exception male, and victims are almost without exception female, and hence has an overabundance of both.

    What makes this exercise different is that it is not concerned with once again proving to us all that men are violent animals and women are innocent victims; that was clearly just taken for granted from the outset. We are now at a more advanced stage: that of trying to persuade government and private donors to switch the cashflow from research projects to prove the need for intervention programmes (that will at best only address part of the problem, and will probably be largely ineffective anyway because they have not produced any compelling evidence to the contrary) to that of actually implementing them.

    And so the march down the pathway towards the dead end continues.

  3. Tom Dobbie

    I despair at how all these things go round in circles. Why should this incessant turmoil be the overwhelming characteristic of all of this ?
    The answer is easy , there is no structure built on irrefutable grounds.
    The starting point must be the behaviour oh humans, not ideologies and political theories.
    As a simple example, imagine moral decency and truth were to be overwhelming priorities in all acts, actions, games and constructs.
    We are a species tied up in the land of babel, where egocentrism and immediacy are two very high stressors. We are lot as a species, and frequent to tribalism of all sorts.
    Is there any hope or respite ?
    I think only for some individuals, the rest are a sea of turmoil in equilibrium.

  4. David Eggins

    William, as a deliverer of a so-called abuser / perpetrator programme, albeit for both female abusers /perpetrators and male abusers / perpetrators, when I read the executive summary as someone with a bit of knowledge about such things I thought: sales pitch which does not really hold water,. However there were some elements that I read “with pleasure,” which I’ll explain a little later. Once again your detailed “deconstruction” of the research highlights just what is wrong altogether and also nails the “lies”, the omissions and the “fessing up” which has gone on.
    We have to remember that “the enormous failures” of the “accredited” perpetrator programmes – accredited by the charity RESPECT, or the Probation Service, for men only, of course, all based on “Duluth” have always had the background problem of “massive dropouts”, 75% plus. Insignificant attention is paid to the needs of men who are seeking to change their behaviours. The main mechanisms for this “induced failure” has not been the men themselves but the means by which they are confronted by an antagonistic, defence inducing environment summarised by the repeated accusations of “minimisation and denial” plus “partner blaming.”
    As I read the remainder of the work I was, of course, looking for the parts played by the so-called “perpetrator programmes”,
    DVIP, based in London, Hampton Trust, based in Hampshire, Relate East Herts as was and a Welsh group.

    Finally some positive recognitions from the actual interviews with abusers to find out what they though helped!
    “Relationship building for behaviour change page 43
    relationship building with the service users by case managers came up as critical to cultivating and sustaining engagement.”

    “Professional: “I would never sit like this opposite someone engaging with the service user, because that kind of, in their head, frames that is an interview rather than a conversation. So I’ll sit alongside them ….. “

    “In year one, we reported that where direct challenge to service users by case managers had been conducted non-skilfully – that is, too directly or deploying shame, service users were quick to disengage, which, in turn, resulted in them imposing a higher risk.” WOW!

    “Differentiating DRIVE: listening, care, non-judgement page 44
    while not a therapeutic intervention, the therapeutic character of DRIVE one on one work, to the extent that care managers practised or embodied active listening, care and nonjudgement, was reported by highly engaging service users as profoundly impactful.” WOW!

    “The DRIVE cohort, getting service users to a place where it was possible to address deeply held attitudes and beliefs in relation to gender, masculinity and violence seems to have only been possible for a small minority, and these types of activities were not commonly recalled by the service users who were interviewed (which is common across many interventions with perpetrators). More commonly recalled by service users (and case managers) was workaround impulse control and emotional regulation. This work aims to open a space of reflection between stimulus and service user response in order, at its most basic, to help service users manage strong/impulsive responses, and more profoundly, to enable connection to perspectives of their own – as in the above case,. In some cases, this also led to more gender orientated work.” WOW ! Finally a near admission of the findings of the late Ellen Pence, he Duluth guru – which she made in 1999!

    Note to time-out strategy page 46

    My comment: The time-out strategy is very largely a nonsense. Walking out – even when negotiated beforehand – results in the argument remaining unresolved.

    Once again the focus is simply on the “perpetrator’s” behaviour, and the “survivor’s” emotionally driven responses are completely ignored.

    The “instrumentally violent” individual is simply not going to do it. Those that do undertake “walking away” are accused by radical feminists of abusing the strategy they suggest, wrong if you don’t do it and wrong if you do! The emotional likelihood is that the “fear” of a “survivor” will turn to “anger” in the interim, in what is very likely to be a “situational couple violence” situation. The “victim’s” anger is going to boil over in the intervening period. When he returns he is likely to find the door locked – and the police called by her when he bangs on the door and tries to “break in”, or he causes a disturbance outside, and the concerned neighbours call the police. Or if he is allowed in then the disruption will not have moved on because now she will be seething angry.

    Back to DRIVE
    “Working with past trauma as a route to acknowledging the impact of abuse
    especially for service users with children, cultivating some reflection on their own experience of abuse (if relevant) seemed to be a critical tool mobilised by case case managers to develop empathy and recognition of the impact of their behaviours on their children. Yes, we knew that, intrinsically and have been doing that since 1995 – hence more than 90% of men and more than 95% of women engage, and stay engaged..” WOW! What a recognition after 30 years!

    Now we hear the old radical feminist take on the subject! The risk of colluding with a male victim!
    “Of course, the risk here is that the service user may slip into a frame of mind where they come to position themselves as the victim, or excuse their behaviour on the basis of what they experienced.”

    My Comment:
    Yes, this was the old Duluth, and Duluth/style perpetrator take on the subject – the problem is that to “hold and help deal with” such traumatic historical events takes much more training than the minimum 5 days advocated by RESPECT for facilitators.

    “Counselling from trained domestic violence prevention program (DVPP) facilitator”

    “This one-to-one work was presented to service users as counselling and certainly had a therapeutic component.” Wow!

    “ However, the one-to-one work differed from counselling to the extent that the facilitator used the space as an additional opportunity to address and challenge problematic talk and behaviour. This was reported by service users as both personally transformative and key to their behaviour change.”

    Ah yes, counselling, “address and challenge”, no problem with that. But does that really mean back to the radical feminist mind-set of male minimisation, denial and partner blaming because that is the nature of toxic masculinity?

  5. Nigel Johnson

    Almost inevitably the majority of research of any form of social policy is led by those of a feminist persuasion. The exceptions are probably in Economics, which often throws up inconvenient facts like me in the west do more work (paid and unpaid) than women, and Psychology from which discipline the resistance to the “Duluth” model comes. Though of course both still have more than enough feminists. There is of course a lot of advocacy research, particularly in Sociology and Law that simply ignores men. Particularly that done by and for charities. However in the more prestigious Universities there are very occasional studies that include men and women. And as you say a common experience of reading such research is to find “surprising” or “interesting” findings that contradict the authors’ thesis in the body of the report. Yet find it missing completely or linked to a bland assertion that “more research is needed” intimating its simply an odd anomaly rather than a potentially serious challenge to their thesis. The fact that much of this that is funded by the government through “research councils” or grants to “charitable” bodies all under the governmental Violence Against Women and Girls Strategy. giving the perfect excuse to leave out boys in any summary or report to the funder.
    I really good example of this was the journey of immature behaviour in teenage relationships from a problem of individual maturity to the current situation of dating or domestic abuse where boys are uniformly toxic. 
    As is often the case a concern in “dating violence” in the USA in the mid 1990s arrived at our shores and stimulated a series of large scale studies in the UK in the early years of this century. There was one in NI, Southwark, Scotland and England around Bristol. With the possible exception of the northern Irish research the project was based on the feminist thesis that females would be the “victims”. All 4 studies included boys and girls and tried to research a representative sample. Uniformly the researchers found a significant proportion of teenage relationships included immature behaviour and some even violence. They also uniformly found that although both sexes engaged in the “abusive” behaviours to a similar extent, but girls more emotionally upset by it, there was the reverse of the expected asymmetry in physical abuse. With Girls much more likely to perpetrate physical abuse on boys than the reverse. Not only was this true of the behaviours but it was also found that though both sexes regarded physical abuse of girls as unjustified in any way the same was not true for boys, a signinficant  proportion of both sexes regarding hitting ot being hit as a boy as “normal”. Now of course this is a major challenge to the feminist thesis. That the complete reverse is true in that violence against girls and women is condoned and “normalised” in our society. 
    There were indeed notes about this “surprising” finding and calls for “more research”. Now Bristol university followed up their first study, not with one looking at the surprising finding they opined needed more research, but one on girls(and only girls) in council care who had much older boyfriends. A pretty unrepresentative sample of girls for a start, as they will be in care because of their abnormal situation and one where you could guarantee a miss match between a teenage girl and a man in his 20s.Needless to say it is this research the Bristol Unit quotes from not the much bigger and interesting research they did a couple of years previously. As far as I know there were never any similar pieces of research done on e representative sample of boys and girls until a couple of years ago in Wales, which again found the “surprising” asymmetry in ideas on physical abuse and greater victimisation of boys. With the same expression of the need for “more research”.
    My point is that because it is generally feminist research that gets funded it pays to look at the body of the report rather than the summary because the same pattern occurs in “Elder Abuse” and the very rare occasion a DV project includes males. There are often very interesting facts in the tables and graphs.   

  6. Wisemanner

    As has been mentioned below, the only reason this goes on is because it is allowed to do so by people with influence, especially, although far from entirely, by Leftist politicians (Labour appointing a known domestic abuser to office, supporting a law against misogyny, and planning a “Ministry for Women” if they get into power). As we have seen, they hurry, with a few exceptions, to bend the keen whenever asked to do so (putting on “I am a feminist” t-shirts, and so forth.) The least any self-respecting male can do, is refuse to vote for any politician that does this. I would also suggest voting for any non-feminist opponent, and putting this issue before all else, if necessary, because its anti-male effects are likely to be so great.

    (William, I am thinking of referring your article to my MP – or one of them, at least. Since I am at present dividing my time between Pontypool and Abergavenny – and paying council tax at both locations, I suppose I can choose one or both. My Pontypool MP is Nick Thomas Symonds, Shadow Home Secretary, and, despite seeming to be a very nice guy, a lost cause, I would think. My Monmouth MP is Conservative and may be worth a shot, although, I would think, very unlikely to actually do anything in the present political climate.)

    1. William Collins Post author

      Yes, by all means use it with MPs. The tragedy of the situation is that it inveigles decent people into supporting it because the feminists (and now the entirety of the identity political crew) have successfully corrupted the popular sense of morality and replaced it with an infantilized morality which sees only one issue where there are many competing issues. Increasingly this false moral position is supported by expensively produced, and seemingly highly academic, material such as this – which extremely few people will bother to deconstruct in order to reveal that it is actually appalling mendacity.

      1. Wisemanner

        My one concern about writing to my MP is that, I would guess that, most, if not all of them, have secretaries, who open their mail and decide what to show them. Most of these secretaries would be female, and, I would guess, be feminist-inclined. Thus a letter enclosing your research might well be binned, or subject to an anodyne response penned by the secretary herself. My suspicion, although I don’t know for certain, of course, is that that is why I got a generalised response to my email suggesting support for Philip Davies’ pro-male amendments to the domestic violence bill. So, it would be a waste of time writing in the first place.

  7. Angelo Agathangelou

    When you think about it, 11 million kids and half of the rest of the UK population over 16 that are male are held hostage by the over 16-year-old female minority.

    That’s right, we British men and children under 16 live in an apartheid regime under the rule of female supremacists.

    I already played the role of Steve Biko, though I tried to fight, campaign, attempt to awaken the simps, as a father was brutally murdered by the British state.

    …This me is the reincarnation. I came back to fulfill my role as loving father with a second family, but I ever lament my shattered children from before my brutal murder. A pitiful insecure mess, …that is what’s left of our once happy bright eyed children. That’s what apartheid does.

    …Agenda 21 went according to the apartheid feminist game plan then. I wonder if they’ll manage to agenda 2030 us as easily, …I wonder how long this filthy rotten feminist-simp coalition apartheid will continue to fester…

  8. Angelo Agathangelou

    One should indeed be concerned that young feminists fresh out of Duluth model uni are given power to go with their ignorance and brainwashing, equal to the task of destroying innocent/victimized men’s lives and worse, equal to the task of splitting such loving fathers apart from their loving children to deeply and permanently wound both. Because all men are the actors and all women are the acted upon say the cultural Marxists that concocted the ridiculous Duluth model.

      1. Wisemanner

        One of the most egregious examples of this sort of increasingly common thing is the (gentlemanly) grilling of that Australian government body by Senator Leyonhjelm (the hypnotic video of it is readily available on Youtube, complete with large numbers of comments from appalled viewers – not that the Australian government took any notice.) Also, I suppose, one of the reasons feminism has been so successful is that its operatives are regularly allowed to get away with this sort of thing – either by people, and especially politicians, too gullible to notice, or sheepish to complain.

    1. AJ

      I don’t think in this case that it is primarily driven by feminists.I do think the general degradation of academic standards, undermining of respect for emperical evidence, logic and statistics and the promotion of epistomological theories that claim reality is socially constructed make such dishonest reports more likely. Feminisim is part of a broader movement which undermines a respect for evidence and a belief in the existence of an objective reality albeit one that is sometimes hard to discern.

      However what is going on here is a broader human and organisational tendancy to minimise and obscure failure, confirmation bias and unwillingness to rock the boat. Once a project has commenced then an organisation and import people within it have invested in it and revealing it to be a failure will not make you popular.

      As a personal example I worked for a large US engineering company in the past and at intervals they would present the state of the business to staff. At one such meeting it was presented that there was a general economic down turn, that our sector had declined, sales were down and that it was not expected that we would increase our market share in the short term. At the end of the presentation the message was that we were doing well and that the outlook was strong. When they asked for questions I asked how they could reconcile the message at the beggining with the message at the end.The result was a flat denial that they conflicted at all and (later) a clear message such comments were unwelcome and unhelpful. The point was that this was a meeting of engineers and the message was completely self contradictory but there was a huge cultural barrier to criticising it.

      The point is that in order for a project to be recognised as a failure it is often internal politics that is more important than reality. In business the raw financial situation stops things becomming totally divorced from reality but in government? Once a project is started getting it recognised as a failure is going to be hard whether or not it is feminist backed.

      On the study itself a further issue is the large number for whom data is not available up to 12 months after the study 36% and a further 89% more than 1 year afterwards. it seems extremely likely that the chance of data being available is to a large extent driven by teh behaviour and cooperation of teh subjects tehmselves. Therefore any comparison of these subsets of subjects is irredeemably flawed. It may be for example taht people do nto make themselves availabel for follow up because they wish to conceal offending, or it may be that those that are availabel for follow up are available because they have reoffended. In either case any meaningful comparison to the original full group is completely destroyed by whatever process is selecting those available. Quoting data for a group reduced to 64% in this way is very dubious, doing so for a group of 11% even with a caveat is ridiculous.

      1. William Collins Post author

        I agree that there is a broader movement within which feminism is now just one part. However, the “evaluation” was led by Marianne Hester…I rest my case.


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