Friday, November 17, 2006

The Truth About Restraining Orders

Will a restraining order protect a person from abuse? From time-to-time, someone in the Judicial System says what is the obvious truth about court orders.
The majority of domestic violence advocates proffer that court issued protection/restraining orders will protect the plaintiff on that order from the abuser. In fact many print that promise of protection right on the order. However, for those who work in the criminal justice system and many domestic violence advocates understand that a restraining order, in and of itself, is a piece of paper that can, in and of itself, provide little to no protection.
Say it again: "a restraining order ... is piece of paper."
There is not a single empirical scientific methodological study that has provided data that has demonstrated that the use of a civil protection/restraining order, in and of itself, can protect a victim or deter repeat domestic violence abuse by an abuser.
The article goes on to question the "Seattle Study" that says court orders work 80% of the time. But, as I've said before, if the breaks on your car only worked 80% of the time you needed to stop, how much would you trust your breaks? Even if the Seattle Study is true - and it is questioned in this article - it doesn't give me much faith in restraining orders.

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