These assessments identify the carer’s capacity to recognise abusive behaviour and take any necessary action to protect their children. They will include both an analysis of the carer’s own history to identify their own beliefs around abusive behaviours, their understanding of the needs of children, and their capacity to recognise the difference between abusive and healthy relationships. The assessments also examine understanding of grooming behaviours and the carer’s own vulnerability to grooming.
These assessments would generally be completed alongside a risk assessment of the adult male abuser, however, can be completed separately if a risk assessment is already available. They can be useful in deciding issues around
- Whether it is safe for the abuser to live with his or his partner’s children
- Whether there is a risk that the carer would expose their children to another abuser in the future
- Whether further intervention work is needed with the carer to increase their understanding of abuse and ability to protect their children
- Whether further specialist assessments are needed
These assessments are particularly useful in informing Child Protection Plans and devising written agreements with protective carers detailing the expectations on them to protect their children.