The Wales Violence Prevention Unit has published Guidance for local areas conducting multi-agency strategic needs assessments as part of the Serious Violence Duty.
The Wales-specific Guidance demonstrates the key steps in developing a strategic needs assessment and includes cross-cutting considerations for local partnerships to explore, as part of a public health approach.
The guidance also provides direction for partners to access key resources and tools needed to complete a strategic needs assessments, including suggested data sources, violence definitions, violence prevention theory and examples of effective practice, and guidance on how to develop recommendations.
Strategic needs assessments are crucial to understanding how violence affects communities, so that partners can work together in developing effective strategies and activities to prevent it. With the Serious Violence Duty, partners have an opportunity to conduct these assessments on a much more local level, which will help ensure valuable time, resources and funding is spent on the right activities to support vulnerable people and communities.
The Wales Violence Prevention Unit is developing a number of tools and resources designed to support organisations to implement the Duty effectively and take coordinated action to prevent violence in their local areas. For example, the Wales Violence Prevention Portal, an online data platform developed specifically for partners involved in violence prevention in Wales, will be launching later this month. This Portal will be an invaluable tool for those who are completing strategic needs assessments, and used together with the Guidance, will help ensure partners across Wales get a true and realistic picture of the types and levels of violence impacting their local areas.Dan Jones, Head of the Wales Violence Prevention Unit