The following checklist provides guidance for organisations who are considering engaging people with lived experience of family violence (experts by experience) in the co-design of services and policies. The checklist is designed to be appropriate for a broad range of activities including introducing people with lived experience on boards and other governance groups, or establishing advisory groups.
Governance and Leadership
Does your organisation have a clear commitment to engaging survivor advocates in the organisation’s strategic plan?
Does your organisation have values and a culture that is consistent with the principles of the Experts by Experience Framework?
Does your organisation have a commitment to making changes to your policies and practice based on input from survivor advocates?
Has your organisation explored a range of models to ensure you can maximise the degree of influence and engagement of survivor advocates?
Resourcing & Training
Do you have funding for a coordinator role to work with the experts by experience?
Is your organisation able and willing to value the contribution of experts by experience and provide them with remuneration and/ or cover out of pocket expenses?
Will paid training or induction be provided to experts by experience to develop the necessary skills to carry out the work?
Workplace Safety & Inclusion
Do organisational strategies to ensure a healthy and safe workplace extend to and protect experts by experience?
Does the organisation operate in a trauma-informed way?
Does the organisation demonstrate diversity and inclusive practice, including ensuring the engagement of experts by experience is resourced for and accessible to people who need interpreters, translators and/or who have a disability?
Is your organisation equipped to support victim survivors to weigh up the benefits and challenges of participating? Read self-reflection questions.
Has the organisation thought about how experts by experience will be recruited, to ensure a range of diverse perspectives will be included (including ensuring the process is resourced for and accessible to people who need interpreters, translators and/or those who have a disability)?
Has the organisation given consideration to what type of induction process might be provided to survivor advocates to ensure they are clear about their rates of pay, conditions, tenure and legal liabilities?
Has the organisation put in place appropriate supervision, support and ongoing professional development for the safety and wellbeing of the survivor advocates?
Has your organisation thought through how you will put in place protections around confidentiality, privacy and safety and how you will work with survivor advocates to regularly review arrangements put in place?
Has the organisation put in place appropriate training, supervision, support and professional development for workers supporting the experts by experience?
Has advice been sought to determine whether survivor advocates are covered by your organisation’s insurance policies and legal service?
Has your organisation established formal feedback mechanisms so that experts by experience are clear about how their engagement with the organisation has influenced change?
Are there clear formal processes for victim survivors to provide their perspective on how the engagement is working as well as express complaints or concerns?
Has your organisation established a process for regularly evaluating the initiative?
If your organisation does not have conditions in place and resources to engage experts by experience, have you considered partnering or developing formal memorandums of understanding with other organisations who do?