Personal Construct Perspectives on Forensic Psychology

By James Horley | Go to book overview

sexual offenders in particular. We have discussed the promising role of therapeutic communities and programmes for offenders on parole in the community. We have illustrated the issues of assessment and treatment with the example of sexual offenders. Denial and minimization, victim empathy, and other attitudes facilitative of sexually abusive behaviour were addressed. Additional foci of the treatment process have been described and illustrated, namely the offence analysis and relapse prevention. We have highlighted some of the issues specific to working with sexual offenders in the community. While we noted the role of phallometric assessment we have eschewed discussing strategies for the behavioural modification of deviant sexual arousal. We agree with Marshall et al. (1999) that there is little evidence for the efficacy of these procedures and we do not often employ them. They are very time consuming and this time can, we believe, be more profitably spent on other aspects of treatment.

There is a sound basis for optimism regarding the efficacy of cognitive-behavioural approaches to treating offenders in the community. And it is this, after all, that keeps most of us motivated to keep going forward with a redoubtable spirit despite the challenges we face working with this difficult population. While we certainly wish the offenders well in their efforts, the bottom line for most of us is to ensure that no more victims fall prey to individuals committing acts of violence and exploitation.


References
Andrews, D.A. (1995). A social learning and cognitive approach to crime and corrections: Core elements of evidence-based correctional practice. In The Level of Service Inventory (Ontario Revision). Hamilton, ON: Ministry of the Solicitor General & Correctional Services, Bell Cairn Centre.
Andrews, D.A., & Bonta, J. (1999). The psychology of criminal conduct. Cincinnati, OH: Anderson Publishing.
Barbaree, H.E., & Marshall, W.L. (1989). Erectile responses among heterosexual child molesters, father-daughter incest offenders, and matched non-offenders: Five distinct age preference profiles. Canadian Journal of Behavioural Science, 21,70-82.
Barbaree, H.E., Peacock, E .J., Cortoni, F., Marshall, W.L., & Seto, M. (1998). Ontario penitentiaries' program. In W.L. Marshall, Y. Fernandez, S.M. Hudson, & T. Ward (Eds.), Sourcebook of treatment programs for sexual offenders (pp. 59-77). New York: Plenum.

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