2.6 Professional Judgement

Professional judgement can be crucial in identifying risks in cases of abuse. This is especially true for honour-based crimes, as the Domestic Abuse, Stalking and Honour-Based Violence, (DASH), risk assessment process indicates criminal behaviours that may not occur in honour-based cases; as such these cases may not make the threshold for a Multi-Agency Risk Assessment Conference, (MARAC).

There will be times when people don't provide reliable responses - if scared or under duress - or they simply don't disclose domesic abuse. It's a sensitive situation and people can feel a lot of shame and may not feel ready to disclose. However, staff may still be concerned about someone's safety and wellbeing. At these professional judgement should be exercised; it's an important skill and should never be dismissed.

Practitioners and professional accumulate a wealth of information from the cases and situations they came across, often subconsciously. This may be experienced simply as a gut feeling. Where possible housing staff should talk through concerns with a colleague. Processing all the information can help make sense of things as well as identify a legitimate basis for elevating a concern.