Challenges of Sex Offender Risk Management in Rural Community Settings. In: Jill D. Stinson (Chair), Needs of Marginalized Populations: Rural, Tribal, and Deaf Sexual Offenders

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Sex offender community re-entry is a process fraught with many challenges. As jurisdictions face increasing demands from the public and legislative bodies for mandatory community supervision and treatment, those tasked with adequate risk management in our communities must often balance the needs of community safety and policy compliance with what is most beneficial and most realistic for the offender. Such challenges are more pronounced in rural communities with limited resources. Identifying clinicians who are willing to provide sex offender treatment services and able to communicate effectively with involved agents (e.g., offices of probation and parole), locating additional treatment services for offenders who struggle with other co-morbid issues like mental illness or addictions, and finding adequate residential and vocational placements, are some of the specific obstacles that clients face in any setting, but perhaps more so when returning to rural or isolated communities. Are such communities equipped for the needs of these clients?

In this presentation, sex offender community reintegration within the context of rural treatment settings will be discussed. This will include a discussion of pilot research that has identified barriers to effective risk management, such as a need for intensive case management and follow-up, coordination with the courts and other responsible agencies, struggles with compliance with residency restrictions, stigma, and unique challenges in ensuring a good quality of life for sex offenders in small communities. Additional preliminary results from an ongoing survey of community and primary care providers describing knowledge, training, and experience related to offender treatment and working with clients involved in the forensic mental health and correctional systems will be included. Here, implications for provider training will be discussed, as well as future directions for more effective interaction between interdisciplinary providers in community settings to facilitate comprehensive risk management for this client population.


Chicago, IL

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