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Victoria’s family violence system is in the midst of transformational change driven by the 2016 Royal Commission into Family Violence (RCFV) and the subsequent reform implementation. Twenty-six of the 227 recommendations made by the RCFV are directed toward Victoria Police with recommendation 58 of the RCFV stating that: Victoria Police should conduct a trial in two divisions of the use of body-worn cameras to collect statements and other evidence from family violence incident scenes (within 12 months). In response to recommendation 58 of the RCFV, Victoria Police is conducting a trial of the use of body worn cameras (BWC) to capture the digitally recorded evidence-in-chief (DREC) of victims of family violence. The trial commenced in October 2018 and is taking place in two Divisions, Western Region Division 3 and North-West Metro Division 5, and involves four police stations – one in Epping and three in Ballarat.
In recommending the trial, the RCFV specified that it should be independently evaluated. The Monash Gender and Family Violence Prevention Centre (MGFVPC) was commissioned by Victoria Police to conduct both a process and outcome evaluation of the Trial of DREC – Family Violence. The trial and corresponding evaluation is one way in which Victoria Police aims to support the implementation of the RCFV’s recommendations and is the focus of this final evaluation report.