Treating Sex Offenders: An Introduction to Sex Offender Treatment Programmes

Treating Sex Offenders: An Introduction to Sex Offender Treatment Programmes

Treating Sex Offenders: An Introduction to Sex Offender Treatment Programmes

Treating Sex Offenders: An Introduction to Sex Offender Treatment Programmes

Synopsis

This book aims to provide an introduction and overview of sex offender treatment programmes, designed for students and practitioners coming to this field. It seeks to describe the development, theoretical underpinnings, treatment goals and operation of cognitive-behavioural and other programmes to an audience unfamiliar with this form of rehabilitation. In addition, it aims to examine the effectiveness of these programmes and the difficulties associated with assessing this, the public response to treatment and also the effects on staff responsible for implementing them. The book is concerned particularly to assess the operation of sex offender treatment programmes in the UK context, considering also the issues associated with implementing programmes developed in other contexts, especially the USA and Canada. It will be of interest to practitioners, particularly those who are beginning work on sex offender treatment programmes, or others (such as health workers, social workers, probation officers) who come into contact with these programmes indirectly.

Excerpt

Over the last two decades, the problem of sexual offending has received widespread public, media and political attention. In fact, Sampson (1994: xi) argued that ‘public concern about sexual crime has become panic’. Media reporting has created the image that there has been a dramatic increase in sexual crime and that women and children face a constant and continued threat of attack. Sexual offenders are despised perhaps more than any other type of offender; so much so, that:

The equation of sexual offender and monster is now firmly part of
the public psyche. ‘Monster’ and ‘beast’ are common euphemisms
for sex offenders in the prison system.

(Sampson 1994: 43)

This has been supported by politicians who were keen to play the law and order card, and calls for tougher sentences for sex offenders have largely gone unopposed (Sampson 1994). The result has been a more punitive criminal justice response, enforced by a recent flurry of rushed legislative changes; for example, in England and Wales at least ten statutes affecting sex offenders have been introduced since 1991. Such an approach is not isolated to England and Wales, for example:

Sexual abuse in North America is epidemic and the criminal justice
system response to it is, for the most part, more reflexive, fear
driven, and irrational than it is practical.

(Freeman-Longo and Blanchard 1998, cited in Laws 2000b: 30)

During the 1980s, sexual offending emerged as a major social problem, although it was not a new phenomenon (see Calder (1999) for a brief . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.