B.C. updates training to help police recognize domestic abuse

Police training updated

Police in British Columbia will be getting a refresher when it comes to recognizing and responding to intimate partner violence.

The government is updating and making their training programs for police mandatory, previous training modules on domestic violence are more than a decade old.

"This timely renewal of training materials will prepare officers to better respond to the realities of intimate partner violence today, including its disproportionate impact on Indigenous women and 2SLGBTQ+ people," said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General.

The newest updates include assessing risk factors for domestic violence with an "emphasis on perpetrator behaviours intended to oppress, dominate, isolate and control victims."

The updated guidelines will also include specific practices unique to Indigenous women and revisions on how best to document and report cases to crown counsel.

"Ensuring that frontline officers have up-to-date information from risk assessment through to charge recommendations, will complement our ongoing work with community partners who are helping vulnerable people transition more quickly to safety and survivorship," Farnworth said.

The new training manuals "reflect current best practices and emerging research," according to the province, and was developed over the past two years with input from police, independent experts, outreach workers and Indigenous partners.

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