Realist Evaluation of Adapted Sex Offender Treatment Programs for Men with Intellectual Disability

Lead Research Organisation: University of Leeds
Department Name: Sociology & Social Policy

Abstract

Adapted Sex Offender Treatment Programs (ASOTPs) have, as their name implies, been modified from mainstream treatment to meet the learning needs of offenders with intellectual disability (ID). They are designed to increase the offender's sexual knowledge, understanding of victim harm, ability to recognise feelings in themselves and others, to modify offence-justifying thinking and to support individuals to develop relapse prevention skills.

In this project I will explore what works on ASOTPs, for whom, in what contexts, why and how. I seek to make sense of these programs in the contexts in which they take place, in order to illuminate what social factors may help or hinder treatment success. In particular, I will examine how effective links between these forensic healthcare interventions and the offender's living context and social care provision, for instance the nature and level of supervision they receive to manage risk, during and after treatment can enhance outcomes. I aim to translate this knowledge into policy and practice recommendations, in order to inform the future targeting of public resources on the most effective treatment, supported by social care packages that can enhance effectiveness.

I will evaluate two ASOTPs, one in the UK and one in Switzerland. Both deliver group cognitive behavioural therapy, lasting about 18 months. The evaluation will entail three phases. First, a literature review will be followed by interviews with twelve international key academics and practitioners who designed ASOTPs. This will illuminate in what ways ASOTPs are intended to work.

Second, I will explore case studies of men who have attended ASOTPs to explain the impact the program had on them, whether and how it worked and in what contexts. There will be three types of data collection. Four focus groups with altogether 24 participants will look at the user experiences of treatment. Eighty patient files will be reviewed to examine how well the treatment worked for each person. From this a sample of 20 participants, ten for whom the treatment worked and ten for whom it did not, will be followed up through interviews with offenders and practitioners, to find out in more detail why the program did (not) work.

Third, the twelve key practitioners will be revisited. Ideas that were developed from phase 1 and 2 on what works, for whom and in what circumstances will be presented to them and they will offer expert commentary. They will examine the case studies from the UK and Switzerland and tease out how wider social contexts, such as public policy and social care practice, impact on treatment success by comparing the case studies to their local contexts. From this a set of recommendations will be derived on most useful policy and practice scenarios and successful social care packages that can enhance treatment success for a particular type of person.

Sex offender treatment seeks to change harmful behaviours and has the potential to contribute towards the prevention of maltreatment towards vulnerable populations. It is therefore a social issues, which is in line with the ESRC strategic priority "influencing behaviour and informing interventions".

Moreover, The ESRC review of strategic priorities 2013 identified "innovation in health and social care" as a focus for the next 24 months. This project can inform this by making suggestions on better collaborations between health and social care, an issue that has also been prioritised by UK central government. In addition, penal responses to people with ID are currently being reformed. This background and the current age of austerity make this project timely, as it can inform contemporary debates and the targeting of scarce public resources on treatment that works. Throughout the project I will network with policy makers, practitioners, disabled people's organisations and interested members of the public to maximise opportunities to impact on practice and policy development.

Planned Impact

Sex offenders with ID tend to target those who are more vulnerable than themselves, including children and other people with ID (Beadle-Brown et al. 2010). There are currently almost 4 million adult (18-64) survivors of child sexual abuse in England, about 30% of whom are males (PANSI 2013). There are approximately 1.5 million people with intellectual disability (ID) in the UK. Incidence of sexual abuse increases for adults and children in this population; with Mencap et al. (2001) estimating it is four times more likely. Thus, the most important group of beneficiaries from this research are vulnerable populations, in that this work hopes to contribute to the prevention of future victims.

Effective treatment of sex offenders can also indirectly benefit those who have been victimised in the past and their families. This research has the potential to contribute to them knowing that treatment programmes are effective and why, which can help them to regain trust and heal.

The exact proportion of those with ID out of the over 40,000 registered sex offenders in England and Wales is unknown. Estimates are hindered by the fact that reporting of sexual offences and particularly those committed against people with ID is low and that some sex offenders with ID have been diverted from criminal justice, while the ID of others remained undetected. What we do know is that ID and other cognitive or learning difficulties such as autism or dyslexia, affect about 20-30% of the prison population (Loucks 2007). In follows that knowledge on ways of personalising interventions to cater for those with additional learning needs can potentially benefit a significant proportion of offenders.

To maximise opportunities for impact I will conduct knowledge exchange activities with a range of organisations, including the Equality and Human Rights Commission, Mencap, Respond, the Prison Reform Trust and Mental Disability Advocacy Centre (Budapest). They can benefit from this research, as it will provide them with evidence to inform disability rights campaigns, both on effective treatment of offenders and also material that may inform campaigns for justice for vulnerable victim groups.

In the short-term, I hope to inform the more effective targeting of adapted sex offender treatment programs for men with ID in forensic healthcare settings. Potential beneficiaries include users and professionals involved in the delivery of such programs. I will provide practice guidance on what works for whom and in what contexts to the Ministry of Justice, Department of Health and National Association of Probation Workers and Integras, a Swiss professional alliance of social pedagogy (professionals with an interest in ID), as well as to further networks of organisations that work with people with ID in Switzerland, Austria and Germany, including INSOS, Socialbern, CURAVIVA and GDFPI.

Medium-term, findings from this research may help to inform more effective public spending on evidence-based programs. Personalised intervention methods can be transferred to other forensic and penal intervention programs for offenders with additional support needs, including non-sexual offenders with ID, offenders with mental health problems and those whose first language is not English.

The complex evaluation methodology developed for this project can potentially be applied by other researchers to similarly complex interventions and with this benefit further offender, professional and victim groups.

Long-term the targeting of evidence-based, adapted and personalised provisions for different offender groups can potentially reduce reoffending rates amongst (sex) offenders with ID and others with additional support needs and increase public confidence in the forensic health and penal systems.

In order to instigate such change I am committed to the comprehensive public engagement and dissemination strategies outlined in the Pathways to Impact document.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description This project contributed new insights into the mechanisms through which sex offender treatment programmes for men with learning disabilities aim to achieve their two intended main outcomes, increasing risk management capacities and cultivating pro-social identities. These are achieved through developing insights into a person's risks, work on (sexual) self-regulation skills, sexual boundaries and personal values and by developing meaningful social roles and positive relationships.
For sex offenders with learning disabilities the long-term manifestation of these intended outcomes cannot not be solely the individual's responsibility. Instead, best results are achieved when individuals have community care packages that address their social care, as well as risk management needs. Practice in this area varies depending on, for instance individual factors (such as sexual preference, IQ presence of additional diagnoses, such as autism, personality disorders or mental health conditions), legal restrictions, the availability of local resources and further contextual factors, such as family support.
This research introduced a new framework for evaluating risk management practices in social care settings, which illustrates how the ultimate objective of risk management, the prevention of future victims, can be achieved through aiming for the preliminary outcomes of competent staff supporting an individual to lead a good life and the design of a robust risk management package, which includes environmental contingencies, coordinated case management, psychiatric care, law enforcement supervision and appropriate CBT training. The most comprehensively planned practice examples were found at the Swiss case study site.
The bed closure programme under the Transforming Care agenda (now continued under the NHS England long-term plan) impacted on outcomes of case study patients who had attended sex offender treatment within hospital. However, discharge worked differently for different patients and social care played a central role in ensuring successful community resettlement. Frontline staff support individuals to set up new, pro-social living routines that feature meaningful activities and relationships. They also take the lead in supporting individuals to manage risks on a daily basis. Thus, the structures provided by social care reinforced the intended sex offender treatment outcomes. Inadequacies in social care provision with a focus on risk management is linked to poorer outcomes for individuals. Regardless, the social care sector in England is receiving insufficient recognition and support for their work in this area. Solutions suggested were better training and pay for frontline staff and above all community support from forensic services.
Successful interagency working between health, social care and criminal justice were linked to best outcomes. Hence, this researcher jointly organised two seminar days with the Prison Reform Trust and the National Autistic Society about effective service planning across these sectors. The events were attended by leading professionals from across England, as well as 'service user' representatives. Our briefing paper, published after the first event summarised the concerns professionals raised on the day, both via presentations and audience discussions and it itemised 13 recommendations regarding prevention and early intervention, contact with criminal justice services and future research (see: http://www.prisonreformtrust.org.uk/Portals/0/Documents/Behaviour%20that%20challenges.pdf). An academic paper summarising professional's concerns from event 2 is currently in progress.
Exploitation Route This study makes the mechanisms that make sex offender treatment for men with learning disabilities work explicit. This is of help for those who are seeking to set up such programs, but also for those who wish to support individuals who are going through or who have completed a program, as it helps them understand what changes in the individual's thinking and behaviours were encouraged by the program and thus what needs to be done to achieve lasting change.
The new framework for evaluating risk management practices in social care settings offers professionals a list of five key mechanisms through which three key outcomes are to be achieved. These can be applied to evaluate and plan support packages within social care and across other sectors.
The briefing paper features many examples from practice that can be replicated in other settings. Contact details of the key practitioners are provided to enable further information exchange between interested parties. Findings about best community risk management practices can also be transferred to offender groups, such as those with autism or violent offenders. Especially the second event involving leading professionals from across England took this broader focus.
Sectors Communities and Social Services/Policy,Healthcare

URL http://www.prisonreformtrust.org.uk/Portals/0/Documents/Behaviour%20that%20challenges.pdf
 
Description This research aims for societal impact. Its key objective is to provide new insights that can underpin the work of different stakeholders in their efforts to support the key aim of treatment programmes for sex offenders with learning disabilities, the prevention of future victims. The research compared practice at a UK and a Swiss treatment site. In April 2017, two of the Swiss practitioners visited the UK site and the day was spent exchanging knowledge about practice. After the day one of the nurses from Mersey Care e-mailed me to specify a number of practice issues she was now re-thinking as a result of this exchange, including the use of a treatment song and extensions of VAK's (Visual, Auditory and Kinaesthetic) teaching styles for people with learning disabilities. On 18 April 2018 the PI attended a roundtable discussion on the Mental Health Act independent review focussing on learning disability and autism. Our response was coordinated by the Prison Reform Trust and subsequently fed back to Sir Simon Wessely, chair of the Mental Health Act independent review. There is also impact to be reported from the events we ran in May 2017 and November 2018. This has been described under research collaborations and the link to the briefing paper is provided under "key findings". In particular, these events brought together key professionals from across health, criminal justice and social care to debate current practice issues and exchange knowledge on possible solutions, such as those reported in the briefing paper that arose from the first event. This has been widely read by practitioners, as demonstrated by at least 20 requests for paper copies, the sharing of links to the electronic version via the NICE, BASW and Network Autism websites, Russell Webester's Blog, a mention in the Transforming Care Programme Newsletter, reads and citations on ResearchGate, which are in addition to the downloads directly from the Prison Reform Trust website, the link that is usually provided for electronic access to this publication.
First Year Of Impact 2017
Sector Communities and Social Services/Policy,Healthcare
Impact Types Policy & public services

 
Description Mental Health Act independent review: Participation to a round-table discussion lead by Lord Bradley
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Participation in a national consultation
Impact Mental Health Act independent review: learning disability and autism Response coordinated by the Prison Reform Trust on behalf of: Centre for Mental Health, Prison Reform Trust & Together for Mental Health Following a meeting of the Prison Reform Trust's Care not Custody programme, and subsequent correspondence with Sir Simon Wessely, chair of the Mental Health Act independent review, it was agreed that the Centre for Mental Health, Prison Reform Trust and Together for Mental Health would convene a small expert round table seminar to discuss criminal justice concerns as they relate to the Mental Health Act. A seminar was held on 10 January, and a consultation response was submitted on 17 January. At a follow up meeting with Sir Simon and one of his vice chairs, Sir Mark Hedley, we were asked if we would repeat the exercise with a specific focus on learning disability and autism, and a second seminar was held on 18 April. Hollomotz attended this event. A response document was drafted, itemizing 20 key points raised by the round table. A full overview can be found under the URL below.
URL http://www.prisonreformtrust.org.uk/Portals/0/Documents/Consultation%20responses/MHA%20independent%2...
 
Description Mention in the Transforming Care Programme newsletter
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Implementation circular/rapid advice/letter to e.g. Ministry of Health
URL https://www.skillsforcare.org.uk/Documents/Topics/transforming-care/April-2018/TCP-newsletter-April-...
 
Description Mention on Russell Webester Blog
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Implementation circular/rapid advice/letter to e.g. Ministry of Health
URL http://www.russellwebster.com/autismsex/
 
Description Mention on the BASW website
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Implementation circular/rapid advice/letter to e.g. Ministry of Health
URL https://www.basw.co.uk/resources/behaviour-challenges
 
Description Mention on the NICE website
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Implementation circular/rapid advice/letter to e.g. Ministry of Health
URL https://www.evidence.nhs.uk/document?id=2014810&returnUrl=search%3fq%3dbehaviour%2bthat%2bchallenges...
 
Description Leeds Social Sciences Institute Impact Acceleration Acount
Amount £7,372 (GBP)
Organisation University of Leeds 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 08/2016 
End 06/2017
 
Description Inter-agency working 
Organisation NHS England
Department NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Andrea Hollomotz, Jenny Tablot from the Prison Reform Trust, David Hardling from NHS Improvement, Clare Hughes from the National Autistic Society and Ellie Gordon, Independent Clinical Adviser have jointly organised an event that took place in May 2017, which brought together key decision makers and front-line practitioners from across health, social care and criminal justice to explore practical strategies for joined-up working through the lens of service provision for people with learning disabilities who have, or are alleged to have sexually offended. Dr Hollomotz was leading the event and has secure additional funding from the Leeds University Impact Acceleration Account to fund this. (The event was part funded by this and part funded from the existing ESRC budget.) The University has provided admin support and a room for project planning meetings. After the event we (mostly Hollomotz & Talbot) have put together a briefing paper on the matters that were discussed on the day. This can be viewed here: http://www.prisonreformtrust.org.uk/Portals/0/Documents/Behaviour%20that%20challenges.pdf A follow-up event was organised by Andrea Hollomotz, Jenny Tablot from the Prison Reform Trust and Clare Hughes from the National Autistic Society. This took place in November 2018 and brought together key decision makers and front-line practitioners from across health, social care and criminal justice to explore practical strategies for joined-up working through the lens of service provision for people with learning disabilities who have, or are alleged to have offended. (The focus of this event was broader, on offending behaviour and not specifically sexually offending behaviour.) Hollomotz is currently working on an academic paper that summarizes key findings from this event.
Collaborator Contribution The expertise of the partners was key in shaping what will be covered and deciding who is attending. Partners were using their extensive professional networks to recruit the right mix of people for this event. We have organised three face to face project planning meetings and were in regular e-mail contact. After the May event Jenny Talbot was the driving force behind writing the briefing paper, with assistance from the other partners. We exchanged countless e-mails, had one further face-to-face meetings and numerous telephone calls about this.
Impact The main outcomes from the event is that it got people from different sectors that often do not speak to one another talking about planning services across sectors for a complex client group. The briefing paper is widely read by practitioners and it allows a wider audience to gain insights into the debates we had.
Start Year 2016
 
Description Inter-agency working 
Organisation National Autistic Society
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Andrea Hollomotz, Jenny Tablot from the Prison Reform Trust, David Hardling from NHS Improvement, Clare Hughes from the National Autistic Society and Ellie Gordon, Independent Clinical Adviser have jointly organised an event that took place in May 2017, which brought together key decision makers and front-line practitioners from across health, social care and criminal justice to explore practical strategies for joined-up working through the lens of service provision for people with learning disabilities who have, or are alleged to have sexually offended. Dr Hollomotz was leading the event and has secure additional funding from the Leeds University Impact Acceleration Account to fund this. (The event was part funded by this and part funded from the existing ESRC budget.) The University has provided admin support and a room for project planning meetings. After the event we (mostly Hollomotz & Talbot) have put together a briefing paper on the matters that were discussed on the day. This can be viewed here: http://www.prisonreformtrust.org.uk/Portals/0/Documents/Behaviour%20that%20challenges.pdf A follow-up event was organised by Andrea Hollomotz, Jenny Tablot from the Prison Reform Trust and Clare Hughes from the National Autistic Society. This took place in November 2018 and brought together key decision makers and front-line practitioners from across health, social care and criminal justice to explore practical strategies for joined-up working through the lens of service provision for people with learning disabilities who have, or are alleged to have offended. (The focus of this event was broader, on offending behaviour and not specifically sexually offending behaviour.) Hollomotz is currently working on an academic paper that summarizes key findings from this event.
Collaborator Contribution The expertise of the partners was key in shaping what will be covered and deciding who is attending. Partners were using their extensive professional networks to recruit the right mix of people for this event. We have organised three face to face project planning meetings and were in regular e-mail contact. After the May event Jenny Talbot was the driving force behind writing the briefing paper, with assistance from the other partners. We exchanged countless e-mails, had one further face-to-face meetings and numerous telephone calls about this.
Impact The main outcomes from the event is that it got people from different sectors that often do not speak to one another talking about planning services across sectors for a complex client group. The briefing paper is widely read by practitioners and it allows a wider audience to gain insights into the debates we had.
Start Year 2016
 
Description Inter-agency working 
Organisation Prison Reform Trust
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Andrea Hollomotz, Jenny Tablot from the Prison Reform Trust, David Hardling from NHS Improvement, Clare Hughes from the National Autistic Society and Ellie Gordon, Independent Clinical Adviser have jointly organised an event that took place in May 2017, which brought together key decision makers and front-line practitioners from across health, social care and criminal justice to explore practical strategies for joined-up working through the lens of service provision for people with learning disabilities who have, or are alleged to have sexually offended. Dr Hollomotz was leading the event and has secure additional funding from the Leeds University Impact Acceleration Account to fund this. (The event was part funded by this and part funded from the existing ESRC budget.) The University has provided admin support and a room for project planning meetings. After the event we (mostly Hollomotz & Talbot) have put together a briefing paper on the matters that were discussed on the day. This can be viewed here: http://www.prisonreformtrust.org.uk/Portals/0/Documents/Behaviour%20that%20challenges.pdf A follow-up event was organised by Andrea Hollomotz, Jenny Tablot from the Prison Reform Trust and Clare Hughes from the National Autistic Society. This took place in November 2018 and brought together key decision makers and front-line practitioners from across health, social care and criminal justice to explore practical strategies for joined-up working through the lens of service provision for people with learning disabilities who have, or are alleged to have offended. (The focus of this event was broader, on offending behaviour and not specifically sexually offending behaviour.) Hollomotz is currently working on an academic paper that summarizes key findings from this event.
Collaborator Contribution The expertise of the partners was key in shaping what will be covered and deciding who is attending. Partners were using their extensive professional networks to recruit the right mix of people for this event. We have organised three face to face project planning meetings and were in regular e-mail contact. After the May event Jenny Talbot was the driving force behind writing the briefing paper, with assistance from the other partners. We exchanged countless e-mails, had one further face-to-face meetings and numerous telephone calls about this.
Impact The main outcomes from the event is that it got people from different sectors that often do not speak to one another talking about planning services across sectors for a complex client group. The briefing paper is widely read by practitioners and it allows a wider audience to gain insights into the debates we had.
Start Year 2016
 
Description Research Partners 
Organisation Forensisches Institut Ostschweiz AG
Country Switzerland 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution I have brought in my expertise and intellectual input. The research I am currently conducting is helping the partners to think through some aspects of the service they provide. In essence, it is a service evaluation. (What works and why? For whom? Under what circumstances?) Practitioners feed back that they have become more aware of what they are doing and how as a result of this research. A visit of key Forio staff to Mersey Care took place in April 2017. This was an opportunity for practitioners from the UK and Switzerland to exchange ideas (knowledge exchange). At Forio I am currently providing academic guidance on how the organisation can produce more and more effective academic outputs. A treatment manual is currently in draft. In particular, I chaired a meeting in Zug (Switzerland) between Monika Egli-Alge and Meinrad Rutschmann from Forio and Seraina Cavizel-Schmitz from the Hochschule Luzern on 8th September 2016 where I helped them to draft a project plan for writing their manual. I advised on issues, such as publisher's peer review processes, targeting writing for specific audiences, delegating work, etc. At Mersey Care we are in the early stages of discussing a move of their treatment into a community based service. The clinical nurse specialist Pam Mount is particularly interested to hear about broader findings from the study and suggestions about best practice for her new program.
Collaborator Contribution Partners have dedicated their time and expertise to this study. I am able to use a desk space and use office equipment when on site at each partner organisation. The partners are also arranging access to relevant data and making initial contact with potential participants.
Impact One paper about Forio was published by the Journal of Learning Disabilities and Offending Behaviour. A further paper is currently under review. We have also delivered a plenary at the 16th International Conference on the Care and Treatment of Offenders with an Intellectual and/or Developmental Disability in Manchester in April 2017 and at the 36th Annual Research And Treatment Conference (ASTA) in Kansas City in October 2017. This is the leading international conference on care at treatment of sexual abusers. At the 17th International Conference on the Care and Treatment of Offenders with an Intellectual and/or Developmental Disability in Birmingham in April 2018 I jointly delivered a workshop session with two nurses and one service user from Mersey Care. A paper reporting on key findings from Mersey Care is currently in draft.
Start Year 2015
 
Description Research Partners 
Organisation Mersey Care NHS Trust
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution I have brought in my expertise and intellectual input. The research I am currently conducting is helping the partners to think through some aspects of the service they provide. In essence, it is a service evaluation. (What works and why? For whom? Under what circumstances?) Practitioners feed back that they have become more aware of what they are doing and how as a result of this research. A visit of key Forio staff to Mersey Care took place in April 2017. This was an opportunity for practitioners from the UK and Switzerland to exchange ideas (knowledge exchange). At Forio I am currently providing academic guidance on how the organisation can produce more and more effective academic outputs. A treatment manual is currently in draft. In particular, I chaired a meeting in Zug (Switzerland) between Monika Egli-Alge and Meinrad Rutschmann from Forio and Seraina Cavizel-Schmitz from the Hochschule Luzern on 8th September 2016 where I helped them to draft a project plan for writing their manual. I advised on issues, such as publisher's peer review processes, targeting writing for specific audiences, delegating work, etc. At Mersey Care we are in the early stages of discussing a move of their treatment into a community based service. The clinical nurse specialist Pam Mount is particularly interested to hear about broader findings from the study and suggestions about best practice for her new program.
Collaborator Contribution Partners have dedicated their time and expertise to this study. I am able to use a desk space and use office equipment when on site at each partner organisation. The partners are also arranging access to relevant data and making initial contact with potential participants.
Impact One paper about Forio was published by the Journal of Learning Disabilities and Offending Behaviour. A further paper is currently under review. We have also delivered a plenary at the 16th International Conference on the Care and Treatment of Offenders with an Intellectual and/or Developmental Disability in Manchester in April 2017 and at the 36th Annual Research And Treatment Conference (ASTA) in Kansas City in October 2017. This is the leading international conference on care at treatment of sexual abusers. At the 17th International Conference on the Care and Treatment of Offenders with an Intellectual and/or Developmental Disability in Birmingham in April 2018 I jointly delivered a workshop session with two nurses and one service user from Mersey Care. A paper reporting on key findings from Mersey Care is currently in draft.
Start Year 2015
 
Description Achieving successful outcomes for people with learning disabilities and/ or autism who display behaviour that challenges, including contact with criminal justice services: police, probation and prison 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Like the previous event, this seminar was chaired by Lord Bradley, who provided an opening address. Our focus was on effective service planning across health, criminal justice and social care for people with learning disabilities and/ or autism who display behaviour that challenges, including offending behaviour. This includes people with sex offending risks but is not limited to this group. To ensure successful outcomes it is necessary for health, social care and justice agencies to develop local strategies that coalesce services around the individual to help prevent risky, challenging and offending behaviour, and the escalation of such behaviour.
Our keynote panel consisted of national leaders who are taking stock of progress made by Transforming Care and they will consider what needs to happen after the programme concludes in March 2019. We also heard from 'service users' and family members.
One of the highlights for delegates at our last event was the opportunity to share concerns with colleagues from across health, social care and justice agencies, and to explore possible solutions in a 'safe' environment. This seminar repeated this participative format, and delegates were invited to contribute to, as well as learn from the event. Presentations and discussions were intended to help to inform local strategies and practice, build networks and improve outcomes for people with learning disabilities and/or autism who display behaviour that challenges.
Reflecting the intersection between social care and justice services, the seminar was jointly organised by the University of Leeds and the Prison Reform Trust, with support from the National Autistic Society. An academic paper that summarises the debates held on the day is currently in draft.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Behaviour that challenges workshop day 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact There are people with learning disabilities and/or autism in every community, some of whom will engage in sexually offending and risky behaviour. Already a highly marginalised group, many will themselves be at risk of exploitation and abuse. Several local, regional and national authorities and multi-agency partnerships have overlapping responsibilities for their health and wellbeing - whether as a statutory duty or because supporting people who are vulnerable is integral to their role.
The array of support agencies can be confusing and hard to access - both for individuals with learning disabilities and/or autism and family members seeking help on their behalf. Early intervention and support can improve outcomes for the individuals themselves, make communities safer and reduce the number of victims, and lessen the high cost of crisis intervention. Our seminar we held in May 2017. We discussed practice examples and suggests practical ways forward and makes recommendations to improve outcomes for some of the most vulnerable citizens in our society.
The seminar was led by the University of Leeds, in collaboration with the Prison Reform Trust, The National Autistic Society and NHS Improvement. It was divided into two parts: first, we considered health and justice pathways for people with learning disabilities and/or autism who display sexually offending behaviour and we heard about some of the challenges and possible solutions from the perspective of national leaders. Second, we focussed on practice within service design and delivery, including practical examples and a 'whole system' approach. Two structured group discussions provided the opportunity for delegates to share practice ideas, raise concerns, and to explore solutions. The seminar agenda is shown in Appendix 1 of the briefing paper (see URL below), and the list of delegates is in Appendix 2.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://www.prisonreformtrust.org.uk/Portals/0/Documents/Behaviour%20that%20challenges.pdf