This report presents the methodology and findings of an evaluation of a 26-week, 52-session skill-building, culturally sensitive, psycho-educational curriculum-based intervention for male domestic-violence offenders who have victimized women.
The program, called EVOLVE, addresses parenting issues and the impact of violence on children, integrates substance abuse education throughout the program, and provides a multisession component on sexuality and sexual violence. EVOLVE was implemented in 2000 in three urban courts that have specialized domestic-violence court sessions. The evaluation focused on the program's effect on subsequent rates of physical and emotional abuse, partners' safety, and safety planning; rates of program completion compared to the more general 26-week program for other courts; and how the victim advocate's role was affected. The evaluation used a sample of 420 men who attended at least 1 session of EVOLVE and a sample of 124 men who attended at least 1 session at the comparison site. Data were collected through interviews at program intake and at 3, 6, and 12 months after intake. The two groups completed their programs at similar rates: 63.5 percent for EVOLVE and 65.2 percent for the comparison group. Six months after leaving the program, 83.4 percent of those who successfully completed EVOLVE had no subsequent arrests leading to conviction for any type of offense, compared to 58.3 percent of those negatively discharged from the program. A similar pattern was found for the comparison group. The same patterns were found for repeat domestic-violence offenses. Recidivism rates were similar across racial/ethnic groups for program completers. Victim advocates' primary concerns were inconsistent court responses, limited resources, and clarification of their role in relation to treatment providers. The evaluation recommends further development of group interventions for abusive men, with attention to cultural issues of race and ethnicity. 11 exhibits and 43 notes
Date Published: April 1, 2005