Mediation and IPV: What the Research Tells Us
The presenters will review data on intimate partner violence (IPV) and family mediation, including the prevalence of IPV in mediation and IPV dimensions and subtypes. They will review research demonstrating the need for mediators to systematically conduct IPV screening and the best methods for IPV screening. They will present findings from a recent National Institute of Justice randomized controlled trial comparing outcomes, for cases with high levels of IPV, in shuttle mediation, videoconferencing mediation, or return to court. Based on available data, they will discuss issues that mediators should consider when deciding if, when, and how to offer mediation to cases reporting IPV.
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Amy Holtzworth-Munroe, PhD (Professor, Psychology, Indiana University) has conducted research on intimate partner violence (IPV) for over 30 years. Her team compared social information processing skills of violent and nonviolent husbands, marital communication behaviors of violent and nonviolent couples, and related issues (e.g., attachment of violent men). They also developed and tested a typology of male batterers. Since 2006, her team has conducted research on divorce/parental separation. They developed an IPV screen for mediation. They tested the effectiveness of interventions, including online parent programs and mediation approaches. They conducted a randomized controlled trial comparing outcomes of shuttle mediation, videoconferencing mediation, and traditional litigation for cases with high levels of IPV. Holtzworth-Munroe is an Association for Psychological Association Fellow and recipient of AFCC’s Stanley Cohen Distinguished Research Award.
Amy Applegate, JD (Clinical Professor of Law, Indiana University) teaches mediation theory and practice in the clinical law program that she developed at the Maurer School of Law. Through this program, law students provide mediation services to indigent and low-income litigants in disputed custody, parenting-time, and other family law cases. Applegate and colleagues have conducted research on family law issues, focusing on families experiencing parental divorce or separation. She and her colleagues have developed and tested screening for a history of IPV in cases seeking family mediation, so that mediators are aware of IPV and consider the possible impact of IPV on the mediation process. They also conduct randomized controlled trials testing the effectiveness of family law interventions, including different mediation approaches (for both families with and without histories of IPV) and online parent education programs. Applegate has received teaching, research, and service awards for her work.