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Adult Overview

Adult Service

The STOP Adult Service provides interventions for adult men and women over the age of 18 who have engaged in harmful sexual behaviour regardless of whether they have been formally charged or convicted.

Those who commit sexual offences are not a homogeneous population therefore our interventions aim to be responsive to the diversity of this client group.

In keeping with the risk, needs, responsivity principles those service users who are assessed as presenting with a higher risk and higher treatment needs will require a 12 month commitment to complete the core programme. These participants will typically spend a longer period of time on the programme as they tend to have more treatment needs (dynamic risk factors) than lower risk service users.

Acknowledging the importance of employment and external commitments the provision of programmes and individual interventions are agreed and delivered at times to meet the demands of the service users. Individual therapy, family support and whanau work with Maori and Pacific Island clients can also be provided.

An Assisted Learning Group Work Programme (ALP) for men with intellectual disabilities and learning difficulties (IQ 80 or less) is also provided in Christchurch and Dunedin.

Programme Outline

The Adult Programme structures into the following components:

Group Intervention

The mainstream programmes provides 3-hour groups for 49 weeks plus two weekly individual sessions for clients assessed with moderate – high treatment needs (as defined by Static & Stable 2007, VRS-SO and pre-treatment psychometrics). Low risk offenders will complete a total of 100 hours or less of individual or group intervention. The ALP programme is delivered in 2 hour sessions up to a maximum of 18 months for high risk/needs offenders.

The content is standardised and based on international research in terms of the affect, cognition and behaviour that is targeted and the order in which this is delivered. Though moderated by the formulations of the particular group of clients, the intervention includes a range of modules that have been generally accepted as necessary for best practice intervention.
The ALP programme utilises treatment strategies and treatment content that take into account the issues identified in the population with an intellectual disability and learning difficulty

Individual Therapy
Each client has individual sessions with their primary Clinician to supplement and develop specific treatment goals that are identified in the assessment.

Support & Education
Family, /whanau and professional networks of each client are supported by the clinician by way of Support and Education sessions and home visits as required.

System Reviews
Clients’ progress in treatment is reviewed 3 monthly by a formal review process to which all support persons, personal and professional are invited

End of Intervention Report
The end of intervention is measured and recorded within the completion report. Progress made against baseline assessments are acknowledged with outstanding areas of need highlighted for further intervention, support or monitoring.

The Capacity and Ability to Protect (CAP) Programme:

  • Offender work is a crucial part of an overall strategy to protect children. However, it is also not uncommon for those who have a history of abuse and who do undergo treatment to return to families which have had little or no work undertaken with them.
  • The CAP provides a comprehensive assessment of the non-abusing carer’s capacity and ability to protect their children from abuse.
  • The assessment determines if they have the necessary skills, information and attitude to protect.

The intervention provides the individual with the opportunity to enhance their capacity to protect their child from an assessed concern/risk of sexual harm

Individual Treatment Programmes:
Catering for the needs of females who have engaged in harmful sexual behaviour or those individuals who are unable to be accommodated within a group programme.

Service Goals/Outcomes:
The overall goal of the Adult service to reduce the likelihood that the participating individual will engage in future acts of sexually abusive behaviour. We aim to achieve this by:

  • Delivering high quality and internationally informed services of intervention.
  • Achieving positive attitudinal and behavioural change in service users through approaches based on best practice and empirically informed effectiveness research.
  • Delivering programmes which have a clear model of change.
  • Promoting collaboration and motivation in engaging service users in the change process.
  • The sequencing, intensity and duration of treatment will be justified.
  • Proportionately engaging with participants based on risk, need and responsivity principles.
  • Delivering programmes designed to address those factors which inhibit the provision of a ‘good life’.
  • Employing the most effective methods of change.
  • Our programmes and approach will continue to motivate participants to utilise strengths and qualities to overcome obstacles to achieving pro—social objectives.
  • Our programmes will evidence maintenance of integrity through the development of transparent quality assurance systems.
  • We will employ the necessary procedures and systems to enable the continued evaluation of our interventions

Philosophy of Intervention

  • Harmful sexual behaviour is preventable.
  • Child protection is paramount.
  • Harmful sexual behaviour is a societal problem. It requires a co-ordinated societal response.
  • Harmful sexual behaviour is ‘any behaviour (physical; verbal, virtual/digital) perceived to be of a sexual nature which is controlling, coercive, exploitative, harmful, or unwanted inflicted on anyone (irrespective of age, ethnicity, religion, gender or sexual orientation ) without consent or understanding.’
  • The aetiology of harmful sexual behaviour is multi-factorial and unique for each individual.
  • Best practice interventions should consider the biological, structural, social, neuro-psychological and social factors in the individual’s life, history and abusive behaviour.
  • One of the key aims of harmful sexual behaviour programmes is to assist the service user to increase his /her internal resilience in order to decrease the likelihood of future vulnerability.
  • The service is delivered within a ‘Good Lives’ approach. The focus of the Good Lives Model is on the enhancement of capabilities in order for the individual to have a greater quality of life, and therefore reduce the likelihood of future abusive behaviour.
  • Individuals are encouraged to develop the necessary conditions, e.g. social supports, values, skills, opportunities that will allow them to achieve their basic human need, but in more socially acceptable and constructive ways, that will not require them to re-offend and harm others or themselves.
  • Intervention focuses on encouraging individuals to identify and adopt new goals that are personally meaningful, and congruent with desistance processes.
  • A desistence based approach complements a programme of collaborative change in which the participant is invited to reflect on what needs to occur if they are to achieve their desired goals and objectives.
  • Working within a desistance framework necessitates a systemic emphasis on areas such as employment, relationships, education, connectivity that are considered relevant to personal growth and true community integration