|Strategies for Confronting Domestic Violence - A Resource Manual (UN, 1993, 130 p.)|
|IX. Gathering and sharing information|
Developing mechanisms to distribute up-to-date information at all levels is an essential part of an overall strategy.
International and regional clearing-houses
Practitioners need access to the existing body of knowledge in the domestic violence field to ensure that their efforts are founded on up-to-date information. Centralized information-distributing mechanisms can provide this service on either a regional or international basis.
Clearing-houses can be an effective information-distribution system. Their main function is to collect and analyse the available data, research findings and information. They store these items in a centralized location and make the information available on an ongoing basis.** They may also develop new information materials to fill identified gaps.
**In the United States, the National Centre on Child Abuse and Neglect, through its Clearing-house on Child Abuse and Neglect Information, compiles information annually on state child abuse and neglect laws. This information enables practitioners to monitor legislative developments across jurisdictions. See L. A. Younes and D. J. Besharov, State child abuse and neglect laws: a comparative analysis, Protecting Children from Abuse and Neglect: Policy and Practice, D. J. Besharov, ed. (Springfield, Illinois, Charles C. Thomas, 1988).
Some clearing-house services are augmented by other coordinating and information-generating activities such as research, publishing and the sponsorship and promotion of cooperative planning and development.
For instance, the Commonwealth Secretariat, United Kingdom, acts as a clearing-house for information on violence against women in the Commonwealth.
It also helps Commonwealth countries to work together to development intervention strategies.
Isis Internacional in Santiago, Chile, operates a clearing-house for information on violence against women in Latin America.
Following a recommendation of the Expert Meeting on Domestic Violence, convened by the United Nations in March 1992, the possibility of establishing an international clearing-house of information, materials and research on domestic violence is being explored by the International Centre for Criminal Law Reform and the Commonwealth of Learning in Vancouver, Canada.