Communities and Justice

Information Sharing Protocol

What is the Information Sharing Protocol?

The Protocol provides precise and detailed information about how to share information under Part 13A and sets out standards that you must adopt when sharing information. You should refer to the Protocol when you are unsure or have a question relating to information sharing practices.

This is important as high standards and good practices will build victim-survivors' confidence in Safer Pathway and the domestic and family violence response system, promote their engagement with support services and ultimately increase their safety.

The Protocol contains useful tools and templates designed to assist you, these include:

More information is available in the Information Sharing Protocol (PDF, 1.7 MB).

Why have an information sharing protocol to address domestic violence?

Domestic violence generally occurs behind closed doors and no one person or agency can see the complete picture of the circumstances of a victim-survivor, but all may have information or insights that are crucial to their safety.

Where possible you should assess the level of threat to your client and work in partnership with other service providers, including sharing relevant information in order to:

  •  prevent domestic violence related deaths, disability, illness and injury,
  • increase the safety, welfare and wellbeing of children who are victim-survivors or exposed to domestic violence,
  • identify and manage domestic violence threats,
  • refer victim-survivors to support services to secure their immediate safety and enable their recovery from the trauma associated with domestic violence,
  • respond to victim-survivors' needs that arise as a consequence of domestic violence to address its impacts, and 
  • hold perpetrators accountable by reporting domestic violence incidents and alerting relevant agencies if there is evidence of an escalating threat of violence.

Every second year, the NSW Coroner prepares a Domestic Violence Death Review Report. These reports include stories of deaths that may have been prevented if agencies and services had shared information about clients at threat of domestic violence, and had taken actions to prevent escalation of the violence.

Many people, including children, are subjected to illness, injury, and homelessness as a result of domestic violence. It is responsible for more ill-health and premature death among women under the age of 45 than any other well-known risk factors including high blood pressure, obesity and smoking. 

By sharing information we can do more to reduce this incidence and its impact on families and communities.

Sharing information can support victim-survivors to get the help they need

Sharing information with other relevant agencies also minimises the risk of victims falling through the cracks, supports victims to more easily and quickly engage with the service to which they have been referred, and ensures that swift action can be taken to address serious threats of domestic violence.

Sharing information with other services also avoids victims having to repeat their story each time they are referred to a new service provider.

Last updated:

21 Dec 2022