Only by binding together as a single force will we remain strong and unconquerable.
Who are we?
Renfrew County Community Risk Watch (RCCRW), formally known as the Renfrew County Situation Table, was established in 2017. It was founded with a mission to implement a proactive and collaborative approach to identifying acutely elevated risk situations that are currently, or have the potential to affect individuals, families and/or communities. Renfrew County Community Risk Watch encompasses all (17) municipalities within the county, as many partnering agencies provide their services on a county wide basis. Some of the services involved in this initiative fall under the following sectors: Justice, Health, Social Services, Education, Private and Government.
What is Acutely Elevated Risk (AER)?
Acutely elevated risk often refers to instances where there is an imminent harm present to an individual, family and/or community. If immediate intervention does not occur, these situations have the potential to escalate and as a result, a negative outcome such as criminalization, victimization and/or harm is likely to occur.
How Does It Work?
The RCCRW has established a strategic alliance of human service professionals from all sectors to table, discuss and mitigate risk situations that have the potential to affect community and individual wellbeing. It has also created a safe and respectful environment for cross-sector communication and collaboration to leverage the resources, expertise and experience of the different agency partners and has developed a wraparound response before an AER becomes a crisis.
Working together under a strict confidentiality framework, partners will then identify and implement mitigating strategies to reduce risk to the individual, family and/or community. We are committed to strictly adhering to the Four Filter Approach to information sharing during discussions. This aids in ensuring that any information that is shared has been done so in a privacy protective manner.
Four Filter Approach:
Filter 1: Internal agency screening. This is the stage at which an agency determines that there is an individual and/or family that has reached a level of AER and that the risk factors are beyond its scope/mandate to mitigate risk and that all traditional inter-agency approaches have been exhausted.
Filter 2: De-identified information. At this stage, the situation is presented to the table using only de-identified data. De-identified date refers to information that has no identifiers relating to the individual (name, date of birth, address, etc.).
Filter 3: De-identified discussion to identify intervening agencies. In this stage, it will be determined if the situation brought forward will be accepted into the table. If it is accepted, the RCCRW will determine which agencies will be required to participate in a full intervention-planning discussion, outside of the full table. Here, there will also be a lead agency determined.
Filter 4: Collaborative intervention planning among chosen intervening agencies. At this stage, identifying information will be shared only with those agencies deemed appropriate to intervene with the individual/family. This allows the professionals involved to consult their own databases to determine if they are familiar or already engaged with the individual/family. A plan will then be established to implement a risk mitigation intervention with the individual/family within 24-48 hours of the table discussion.
Individuals and/or families who are offered these services by the RCCRW have the potential to benefit from faster access to various services within the county before harm occurs. There is also the opportunity for the individual/family to be connected to resources that they may never have been able to access, or successfully engage in, before their situation was deemed an AER.
The predominantly rural nature of Renfrew County does present unique challenges and risks and therefore, we strive to combat these challenges and risks through quick response times. The RCCRW leads to greater efficiencies and use of police resources, as individuals and/or families who have been referred are connected with the appropriate services providers and will have support in assistance with maintaining their wellness. It has also assisted with an increase in community safety and wellbeing.
The RCCRW has identified the need for the further partnerships within the community and will continue working to develop and establish those partnerships, allowing for the best possible assistance for those in the AER category. The further development of partners is paramount in the future success of the Risk Watch.