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Hugo*, 16, was seen at Melbourne Children’s Court. It was his first court date. Police had obtained an interim order excluding Hugo from his family home following abusive behavior towards his father. Youthlaw provided Hugo with legal advice about family violence, his options and the consequences of breaching the interim order. Hugo met with the Youthlaw youth worker who did an initial intake and assessment. They discussed accountability for his behavior and practical strategies to prevent further
use of violence. The interim intervention order (IVO) was varied to allow Hugo to return home with his father. Following this Hugo described the intervention order as a reminder that he needed to behave. He talked about how he had become more aware of how anger felt in his own body and how it could build up.

Withdrawal from cannabis was a priority for him and the youth worker assisted Hugo with a referral to a youth substance abuse service and arranged for him to see the visiting Centrelink worker at Frontyard. The Magistrate indicated that due to Hugo’s good work over the adjournment period an undertaking would be appropriate in the case. Hugo made a promise not to commit family violence or damage property. The intervention order application was withdrawn and he returned home. Our youth worker continues to be engaged with Hugo, primarily to assist him to consolidate his plans and to be a continuing point of support and contact for him to be referred to other services.

*Hugo is a pseudonym to protect the client’s identity.

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