Systematic Review of Research on Co-Location Models for Serving Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survivors


Co-located models to address intimate partner violence and sexual violence, such as Family Justice Centers (FJC) and Multi-Agency Model Centers (MAMC), have emerged as promising practices to meet the needs of survivors. Although implementation of FJCs and MAMCs is widespread and supported by a recent increase in funding, little is known about the effectiveness of these models. This systematic review synthesizes and critically analyzes the peer-reviewed and grey literature focused on evaluating FJCs and MAMCs in the United States. A systematic search of terms pertaining to intimate partner violence, sexual violence, and co-located models was conducted using 11 computerized article databases and 15 center and organization websites. Thirteen studies were included in the final sample, most of which were government or agency-initiated reports. Over half of the studies were process evaluations and four were outcome evaluations. Of the outcome evaluations, none included a comparison group and two used a longitudinal design. Overall, the studies largely focused on organizational outcomes as opposed to survivor outcomes. Despite the lack of information pertaining to survivor outcomes, study findings indicated a high degree of provider and survivor satisfaction with co-located models. Although the research on co-located models – such as FJCs and MAMCs – is growing, evidence about the models’ impact on survivor outcomes related to safety and well-being is inconclusive. Using methodologically rigorous approaches to evaluation design and data analysis, future research should focus on exploring the relationship between coordination, collaboration, and survivor outcomes.

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Tonya B. Van Deinse was supported by The Lifespan/Brown Criminal Justice Research Training Program which is funded by National Institute on Drug Abuse (R25DA037190).

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Correspondence to Cynthia Fraga Rizo.

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Rizo, C.F., Van Deinse, T., Durant, S. et al. Systematic Review of Research on Co-Location Models for Serving Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survivors. J Fam Viol (2021).

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  • Intimate partner violence
  • Sexual violence
  • Family justice center
  • Co-location
  • Evaluation
  • Systematic review