Center for Victim Research Webinar: Helping without Harming: Educating Mental Health Professionals on Working with Survivors of IPV

Center for Victim Research Webinar: Helping without Harming: Educating Mental Health Professionals on Working with Survivors of IPV


From 2:00 PM until 3:00 PM

At Webinar

Center for Victim Research /

Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a global problem that mental health professionals are guaranteed to encounter. This webinar synthesizes existing literature on how mental health professionals are prepared to support those experiencing IPV and discusses how an intersectional feminist framework can be applied in practice settings to confront the complexities of abuse.  


  1. Participants will examine a review of the existing literature on how mental health professionals are currently prepared to work with IPV survivors.
  2. Participants will learn how applying an intersectional feminist framework can promote social justice for those impacted by IPV and encourage critical conversations about confronting the complexities of abuse, assessing safety, and honoring lived experiences.
  3. Participants will be provided with several strategies and tools to appropriately assist clients who have experienced IPV through a feminist, empowerment model. 



Amber Sutton, LICSW, is a licensed independent clinical social worker and a current Ph.D. Candidate in the School of Social Work at the University of Alabama. Her dissertation research focuses on understanding the links between intimate partner violence [IPV], femicide, and COVID-19 through an intersectional feminist framework. Amber holds degrees from Washington University in St. Louis and from the University of Montevallo. Amber has worked with survivors of IPV and their families for the past nine years in a multitude of settings including residential services, prevention education, the legal system, and program evaluation. Amber has also worked as a Director for a domestic and sexual violence agency where she developed and supervised the legal, case management, SANE, counseling, and prevention and intervention education programs. Amber currently serves as a therapist specializing in work with survivors of IPV, a core leadership member of the City of Birmingham’s Women’s Initiative, and is a member of Tuscaloosa's Trauma Systems Therapy team. Amber’s interests include protections for pets, partner violence in rural communities, trauma-informed management techniques within non-profit organizations, and social justice as it relates to gender-based violence. A survivor herself, Amber is interested in conducting and utilizing research to identify, improve, and support micro, mezzo, and macro-level responses to survivors of violence. Previously, Amber served as a member of the Board of Directors for the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV).

Haley H. Beech, LMSW, is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of Alabama, School of Social Work, and a licensed master social worker. Her research focuses on the intersection of maternal health and violence against women, including intimate partner violence and obstetric violence. She has a BA in Sociology from Samford University and an MSW from the University of Alabama. Haley is a social work researcher, community advocate, and intersectional feminist. As a qualitative researcher, she values the lived experiences of others and honors their local knowledge by aiming to highlight their voices and disrupting traditional education in the academy. Her work and research focus on bridging the gap between research and practice with an emphasis on research-informed practice and practice-informed research. Additional research interests include global health social work, maternal health and mortality, intimate partner violence, reproductive justice, cultural humility, and social work education.


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