Community Policing and Family Violence Against Women: Lessons Learned from a Multiagency Collaborative

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Although traditional attitudes and policies toward family violence are now changing to reflect its magnitude and severity in the United States, multiagency collaborative partnerships have emerged in an effort to develop a system that promotes the safety and welfare of victims of family violence and to prevent further abuse. This study analyzes the process of a multiagency collaborative involving a large, municipal police department and other service providers as an attempt to find meaningful solutions to family violence against women in a southwestern metropolitan area. The results suggest that even in an era of multiagency collaboration, one cannot presume that personnel of relatively autonomous organizations have the organizational capacity and/or the willingness among personnel to truly collaborate. Formidable barriers toward effective collaboration abound and result in a less effective process of negotiation rather than collaboration.