Forensic Services

Respond's Community-based Forensic Services

Respond’s Forensic service provides risk analysis/assessment, forensic psychotherapy to young people and adults with learning disabilities autism or both that demonstrate sexually harmful behaviour or are at risk to themselves and others. The services reduce the risk of harm and reduce reoffending and further victimisation.

Young people and adults with learning disabilities, autism or both who are at risk to themselves and others because of aggressive and/or sexually harmful behaviour, including sexual assault, rape, violence, paraphilias and perversions have, in our experience, trauma in their lives.

If a person has been cautioned, where there is a suspicion of an offence having been committed, after discharge from prison or secure hospital, when there is a risk of falling between services, when someone's behaviour is not illegal but is of concern, work with Respond will improve understanding of behaviour, reduction in levels of supervision needed, becoming more independent and reducing the risk of reoffending. Offending behaviour is considered using trauma-informed approach. We work with the client's network to help raise awareness of the issues and risks involved which, in our experience, influences how successful the work can be in enabling the person to achieve their aims.

Social workers, GPs, Nurses, self-referrals, family members, police, probation service, other providers feel more confident to do the work with people who offend and in turn are able to offer a more consistent service to support reduction in offending and revictimisation.

Since 1991 Respond has been providing services for people with learning disabilities or autism. As part of its pioneering work Respond's Forensic Services have developed in order to help and encourage understanding of offending and perverse behaviours, to reduce risk and to help people to live their lives as independently and as safely as possible.

The field of forensic learning disabilities and autism is expanding. Professionals need to be better informed about the needs of young people and adults who have, or who are likely to, come into contact with the criminal justice system or secure mental health services due to their behaviour.

Sexual offending, arson, violence, theft, harmful sexual behaviours and sexual perversions (paraphilias) are some of the reasons why people with learning disabilities or autism may find themselves in prison or in forensic mental health settings. The impact of coming into contact with these services can be traumatic and clients often have great difficulties upon reintegration into the community. It is essential, therefore, that professionals in community-based settings are able to support and if necessary refer on to appropriate services. This is where Respond's services help to make a valuable contribution to a person's return to the community, as well as to those people who are at risk of coming into contact with forensic services in the future.

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Risks and Solutions

Accurate assessments and early interventions are the keys to substantially reducing re-offending and enabling clients to live as independently as possible. Respond provides in-depth assessment, treatment and support for individuals, their families and the network of people around them.


Risk Analysis

Respond's Risk Analysis incorporates current Risk Assessment and Risk Management practice and thinking into a comprehensive, expert opinion and recommendations. Professionals are provided with an in-depth, analytical report on risk management strategies and treatment plans in order to reduce offending. Increasingly, it is recognised that 'good' and 'bad' co-exists in the same person that leads to a treatment model that acknowledges, and can respond to, the abused and the abuser.


Psychological Treatment

Respond provides psychological treatment that uses the therapeutic relationship as a way of understanding the basis of ' offending' and how best the client may be helped to reduce the frequency and severity of their behaviour. Respond's forensic model has grown into an Attachment-based Systems Approach (ASA) that has developed over the last 25 years. Using this approach clients become better able to understand and have a role in managing their own offending, supported by those around them.


Services

Risk Analysis - Combines actuarial and clinically informed Risk Assessment and Risk Management into a detailed report with recommendations on levels of supervision, risk reduction and treatment.

Individual Forensic Psychotherapy - Combines psychodynamic and systemic theories in order to treat individuals and help them to make sense of desires and beliefs that are often at the root of their offending and harmful sexual behaviours. At the same time Respond provides support and guidance for the network.

Men's Forensic Group - The group model is one that was initially developed at Respond and subsequently developed in Ireland. The model is a systemic one that recognises the complex issues inherent in forensic group therapy. The model provides a combination of direct work with the men and simultaneously working with the network.

Circles of Support and Accountability - Since 2012 Respond has been providing COSA's for young people and adults. These are community-based responses to the need for sexual offenders and to be kept accountable for their behaviour, to be monitored, supported and most importantly to not feel isolated.

Training, Supervision and Consultancy - Support and training for professionals working in the field is essential in order to share best-practice and to limit the impact of working with forensic material.


Referrals

To make a referral contact Respond on the number below. Potential clients who meet our intake criteria will often be offered an assessment to see whether or not the treatment we provide would be appropriate. Clients are seen at our London (Euston) base, although assessments can take place in other parts of the country.


Costs

There are different costs for different services. Please call Richard Curen on 0207 874 5483 or email richard.curen@respond.org.uk for more information or to discuss a potential referral.