Manitoba forms a domestic violence death review committee

Attorney General Andrew Swan and Labour and Immigration Minister Jennifer Howard, minister responsible for the status of women, today announced the formation of a new committee to review homicide cases involving domestic violence to see what can be learned from them and to seek ways to prevent similar deaths from occurring in the future. 
 
"It’s important to try to understand the factors that lead to tragic and needless deaths when intimate relationships take a fatal turn," said Swan. "One death is one too many and the knowledge the committee can gain could truly be powerful when it comes to preventing domestic violence."
 
"The establishment of the Domestic Violence Death Review Committee is an important step forward in Manitoba’s ongoing efforts to confront family violence and violence against women," said Howard. "We want to thank our partners across government, in law enforcement and in the community who have made this possible."
 
The Manitoba Domestic Violence Review Committee will report to the attorney general and will include representatives from Manitoba Justice Victims’ Services, Prosecution Services and Probation along with the Family Violence Prevention program, Manitoba Status of Women, Manitoba Women’s Advisory Council, Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, Winnipeg Police Service, RCMP and RESOLVE, which is a regional family violence research network.
 
The ministers said the reviews will take a fresh and detailed look at selected cases where the criminal justice process is completely over, looking for trends, risk factors and patterns. The committee will explore the history, circumstances and conduct of perpetrators, victims and their families. Community and systemic responses will be examined to identify possible gaps and points of intervention that might help others avoid similar fates. Extensive work has gone into ensuring the committee and its working group will respect the privacy rights of victims and avoid further traumatizing surviving family members, they said.
 
Swan said the goal is to seek recommendations for effective domestic violence intervention and prevention strategies. He added recommendations from the committee will be provided to him on an ongoing basis.
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