Vacancy -- National Adviser for Violence Against Women and other forms of Gender-based Violence, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence
Gender-based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence in any form is unacceptable. Evidence shows gender-based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence are as much an issue in Wales as for the rest of the UK and across the world.
Violence against an individual within a family environment has wider consequences. Children growing in an environment of domestic abuse can have a profound impact on their education, future relationships, health and emotional wellbeing. Individuals can be targeted in work resulting in individuals taking time off; victims can also suffer short and long term mental health issues.
The Welsh Government’s commitment to tackling such abuse and violence is clear and evident. The Violence against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (Wales) Act 2015 sets in place the legislative framework to provide a strategic focus and ensure consistent consideration of preventive, protective and supportive mechanisms in the delivery of services. It addresses gender-based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence perpetrated against all people in Wales, irrespective of gender or sexual orientation and addresses violence perpetrated against a woman or man arising directly or indirectly from values, beliefs or customs relating to gender or sexual orientation.
The Act ensures an improved public sector response to gender-based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence aiming to:
• promote awareness of, and to prevent, protect and support victims of gender-based violence, domestic abuse, and sexual violence;
• strengthen the strategic leadership and accountability for gender-based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence; and
• improve the consistency, quality and join-up of service provision in Wales through an improved and shared evidence base.
The Act requires the Welsh Ministers to appoint a National Adviser to drive improvements across the public and third sectors on the issues of gender-based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence.
The Welsh Government is seeking to appoint the first National Adviser for Violence Against Women and other forms of Gender-based Violence, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence following Royal Assent of the Violence against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (Wales) Act 2015.
The post-holder will be expected to be an expert in this field, providing an informed perspective on the work being taken forward to develop and implement the policy and legislation in these areas.
This is a statutory role appointed via the public appointment process. The Adviser will work alongside the Government to advise and assist the Welsh Ministers in tackling these issues. The Adviser will be appointed by the First Minister.
This appointment offers an excellent opportunity to develop knowledge and experience of working with the Welsh Ministers and policy making at a national level.
The functions of the Adviser, as set out in the Act are to:
• advise the Welsh Ministers about pursuing the purpose of the Act and tackling related matters ;
• give other assistance to the Welsh Ministers in their pursuit of the strategic priorities or tackling related matters;
• undertake research relating to pursuing the strategic priorities, tackling related matters or examining whether abuse of any kind is related directly or indirectly to inequality of any kind between people of a different gender;
• advise and give other assistance, with the agreement of the Welsh Ministers, to any person on matters relating to pursuing the strategic priorities or tackling related matters;
• produce reports on any matter relating to the strategic priorities or tackling related matters.
In practice the Adviser’s role will include, on behalf of the Welsh Ministers:
• agreeing an annual plan setting how they propose to exercise their functions during the following year;
• providing an annual report to the Welsh Ministers setting out how the priorities set out in the annual plan have been met, including a statement of other activities they have undertaken during the year;
• providing an expert perspective to the development and implementation of the National Strategy and supporting indicators, ensuring their experience and expertise is brought to bear across the Welsh Government and so help the development of more coherent and consistent policy and decision-making;
• working with Public Services across Wales and beyond to ensure best practice, and support the high quality and standards required by the Welsh Government;
• reviewing the actions being taken by persons in exercising their functions under the Act, and advising the Welsh Ministers of the findings;
• encouraging all services and agencies to perform to a quality standard, including the coordination of services, performance monitoring, multi-agency working, information sharing and data collection;
• providing a focus to ensure tackling gender-based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence is a priority across the Public Sector;
• addressing the issues of strategic incoherence, inconsistency of approach and lack of leadership at both a Local and a National level in Wales;
• working with the specialist third sector and charitable organisations that provide services in Wales supporting victims and survivors of violence against women, domestic abuse and sexual violence to seek their input to the development of policy, strategy and service delivery;
• working with victims and survivors, to gain an understanding of their experiences and views and to consider how these could influence the development of policy and delivery of services;
• supporting the Welsh Ministers in raising awareness of the issues associated with tackling gender-based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence including through national campaigns;
• providing expert advice to the wider Welsh Government VAWDA Team on a range of policy issues including education and training; and
• participating in Ministerial and official level meetings to discuss their work and input to wider policy development
All candidates will be required to demonstrate in their written application and at interview how they meet the requirements of the post, including examples of how, in previous activity, you have demonstrated each of the requirements. The criteria used to assess whether candidates have the necessary qualities, skills and experience are listed below.
The successful candidate will have the profile to command respect and credibility with the Welsh Ministers, the National Assembly for Wales and external stakeholders and be able to demonstrate:
(i) Broad experience at a senior level in public, private or third sectors, as well as a strong understanding of public policy and interest in the areas of gender-based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence.
(ii) Objectivity and independence from Government and specific interest groups (where there could be potential conflicts of interest).
(iii) Track record in scrutiny (private, public or voluntary sector experience).
(iv) Experience in the development and implementation of strategic and operational priorities and the development of workable recommendations to improve the impact and effectiveness of public service and third sector delivery.
(v) Adherence to the Seven Principles of Public Life and the highest levels of professional integrity and propriety
Skills, Knowledge and Experience Required
• Professional expertise in the field of violence against women and other forms of gender-based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence, including an understanding of equality issues and the vulnerabilities and challenges faced by victims and the support they should receive.
• Recent experience at a senior level in public, private or third sectors, of facilitating successful change management.
• Strategic perspective, leadership, influencing and negotiating skills to bring together a diverse range of internal and external stakeholders with a wide and varied range of views and priorities.
• A successful track record in developing policy and services and a clear understanding of commissioning services within tight budgetary constraints.
• Excellent oral and written communication skills, particularly on complex and/or sensitive issues.
• Political awareness.
• Given the high profile of the role, experience of working with the media is essential.
• The ability to communicate through the medium of Welsh is desirable but not essential. However, all candidates will be expected to display an empathy towards the language and support decision making to strengthen bilingual service provision.
• Understanding of the Welsh Government’s policies on gender-based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence.
The Adviser will provide an independent, balanced input, offering expertise and advice where required as part of a range of ongoing work feeding into the shaping of policy development and legislation. The post-holder will be required to have frequent dialogue with the wider policy team, as well as the Welsh Ministers.
The position is situated within the Welsh Government’s Community Safety Division offering a unique opportunity for the successful candidate to apply their knowledge and experience by providing practical advice to inform the strategy and policy development that will underpin the legislation.
The Act prevents the Adviser appointing staff or acquiring and renting property; instead the postholder will be supported by Welsh Government staff and accommodated in offices provided by the Welsh Ministers.
The Welsh Government already has an established policy team covering these issues. This team includes seconded experts dealing with domestic abuse, FGM, so-called honour based violence and anti-slavery. The National Adviser will be supported by officials within the Violence against Women and Domestic Abuse team.
The role is remunerated at circa £58,000 per annum (part-time, negotiable depending upon the successful candidate).
The post holder can claim reimbursement for reasonable travel and subsistence costs necessarily incurred during the course of their duties at rates set centrally by the Welsh Government.
This vacancy is closed to applications.