Under MASIP, agencies work together to ensure a robust criminal justice response is paired with perpetrator intervention, while remaining survivor-centred and trauma-informed to enhance protection to those victimised. Local area partnerships include specialist stalking victim advocates and health professionals, as well as police officers and probation. Offering bespoke interventions, MASIP aims to reduce risk and reoffending by identifying and addressing the specific patterns of fixated and obsessive behaviour at the earliest possible stage, and in some cases prior to any contact with the police, as well as individual motivations of stalkers depending on their typology.

As part of this approach, there is a specific focus on health-based therapeutic interventions with perpetrators where appropriate, aiming to increase the knowledge of what works to tackle fixation and obsession. These interventions are psychologically informed, and the length of the intervention depends on the particular case at hand. Stalking is not a mental health condition, rather all stalkers have a common sense of entitlement, and as such must be treated on a case-by-case basis. However, some stalkers do have mental health diagnoses (such as narcissistic personality disorder, anxiety, depression, paraphilic disorder and more) and therefore must be referred to a specialist service and managed, if the aim is rehabilitation.

Victim advocacy is also central to MASIP’s survivor-centred risk management approach. Advocates work to provide a voice for victims of stalking, ensuring victim safety is prioritised and that their needs and wishes are understood by the professionals involved in working with the perpetrator, challenging approaches where necessary. Advocates provide essential advice to the victim on safeguarding and evidence gathering, as well as emotional and practical support; they also ensure that the victim is kept informed on the progress of their case. The latter is vital as criminal justice professionals often fail to do so, so it ensures the victim’s needs are at the forefront of the case.

This multi-disciplinary approach has led to a wide range of benefits across partner agencies, including raising awareness and improving responses to stalking cases and victims. An evaluation of the MASIP pilot by researchers at University College London found positive outcomes and promising indicators, while also highlighting that such multi-agency programmes require longer-term stability and funding to fully assess impact and effects (Tompson, Belur & Jerath, 2020). Notably, stakeholders felt that the multi-agency approach improved the response to stalking, with better investigation and appropriate charging. They also highlighted the importance of information sharing for risk management. Stakeholders’ perceptions are reflected in positive police outcomes, with each site having a greater proportion of cases resulting in a charge. The evaluation also found a high level of satisfaction overall with victim advocacy services, with victims feeling supported and empowered to manage their own safety, although this did not necessarily lead to satisfaction with the criminal justice system, such as the courts. In addition, perpetrators indicated a certain confidence that they had the appropriate tools to address their obsession and fixation. MASIP models can therefore be considered to reduce risks and costs for the victim that escalate into worst-case scenarios, including in some cases serious or fatal outcomes, as well as the devastating impact of persistent stalking.

Following the pilot, the MASIP project continues on all three of its pilot sites. Our consortia of MASIP experts continues to share learning and Suzy Lamplugh Trust continues to provide project management and advocacy provision in the London Stalking Threat Assessment Centre (STAC).