Rice County Blueprint for Safety
Developed by the City of Saint Paul, Praxis International, and the Saint Paul Domestic Abuse Intervention Project, the Blueprint for Safety is an innovative approach in criminal justice intervention to protect victims of battering and end intimate partner violence. It is a comprehensive response to domestic violence crimes, based on thirty years of community practice and research.
The Rice County Blueprint has taken this information and since 2014 has been meeting monthly to ensure that our county continues to help create victim safety and hold offenders accountable.
- Improves how agencies share information, from 911 operators to police and prosecuting attorneys to courts and probation
- Ensures risk is properly assessed and responded to at every step
- Encourages new victim engagement strategies
- Pays attention to reducing unintended negative impacts on survivors and their communities
- Creates a new way for agencies to work together to identify problems and find solutions that increase protections for victims
The principles carry the essence of the Blueprint. In a Blueprint community, the major criminal justice agencies agree that the foundational principles will guide the response at each step.
Six foundation principles are fundamental to how the Blueprint functions.
- Adhere to an interagency approach and collective intervention goals
- Build attention to context and severity of abuse into each intervention
- Recognize that most domestic violence is a patterned crime requiring continuing engagement with victims and offenders
- Ensure sure and swift consequences for continued abuse
- Send messages of help to victims and messages of accountability to offenders
- Act in ways that reduce unintended consequences and the disparity of impact on victims and offenders
For the past three years, the Blueprint Team has been working on a project to find out what is and isn’t working and to create a plan of next steps for the team. As a result of the research driven by Dr. Martha Brown from RJAE Consulting, our team involvement, system provider, and survivors' voices, we now have a report ready to share. The Blueprint 2.0: Determining How Systems and Agencies in Rice County Can Improve Outcomes for Victims of Domestic Violence has become our template to move forward and address some of the cracks in the criminal justice system here in our community.