Do you speak the common (risk) language? A guide to risk for sexual offending

Andrew E. Brankley

7,099—that is the number of different languages spoken on Earth. How many do you speak? Most people only speak one and, if you are reading this blog, it is probably English. Learning English is highly valued because it is spoken in so many different countries; it is a common language. A common language is especially valuable in coordinating professionals and the public to prevent sexual abuse.

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Female child sexual abusers – how are they getting away with it in organisational contexts?

Andrea Darling

Hardly a week goes by nowadays when there isn’t a newspaper article covering the latest female teacher to ‘engage in a sexual relationship’ with a pupil. Examples can be found in the UK, US, Canada and Australia.

By female child sexual abusers in organisational contexts, I’m referring to those women in positions of trust with children and young people and abuse within the organisations and institutions in which they work, either in paid positions or voluntarily. This includes teachers, social workers, nurses, sports coaches, nursery workers, and care staff for example.
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A response to Virtuous Pedophiles Exist

Nick Devin and Ethan Edwards (founders of Virtuous Pedophiles)

Thank you so very much for pointing out the very important distinction between pedophiles and child molesters.  Pedophiles are universally reviled, because people mistakenly believe that all pedophiles are either child molesters or are fated to become child molesters. This is simply not true.  No one chooses to be sexually attracted to children, and pedophiles can’t stop being sexually attracted to children, but many can and do successfully resist their attractions.

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Virtuous pedophiles exist

Kelly Babchisin

It is a commonly held belief that individuals with a sexual interest in children (that is, pedophiles) are at an extremely high risk of committing (or to have already committed) a sexual offence against a child. When people hear ‘pedophiles’, most immediately think ‘child molester’, ‘predator’, or ‘sex offender’. Most overlook an important distinction: pedophiles are those who hold a sexual interest in children whereas sex offenders against children are those who have committed a sexual offence against a child. These terms are not synonymous. Indeed, a large body of research has found that not all pedophiles are sex offenders, and not all sex offenders are pedophiles (Seto, 2008). Some pedophiles only have a sexual interest in children (exclusive pedophiles), whereas other pedophiles have a sexual interest in both children and adults (nonexclusive pedophiles).

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Why do we keep rehashing the sex offender treatment effectiveness debate?

Kelly M. Babchishin

There are a lot of meta-analyses and review articles examining the effectiveness of treatment programs for sex offenders. The most recent meta-analysis by Grønnerød and colleagues (2014) did not find that treatment programs reduced the risk of reoffending among sex offenders against children. These authors arrived at the same conclusion that Långström et al. (2013) presented in their systematic review a few months earlier: there is a lack of quality studies, and the limited “good quality” studies do not provide overwhelming support for the effectiveness of sex offender treatment programs. Of course, not all treatment programs are created equal.

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Community interventions for sex offenders: Evidence, sense, and funding

Ian V. McPhail

In the past week or so, certain professional circles (the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers) and the media (here and here) have been discussing a recent announcement by the Correctional Services of Canada that funding for Circles of Support and Accountability (CoSA) will be cut come March 31st and eliminated completely by the Fall of this year. However, as the story unfolds, the Canadian federal minister responsible for public safety has “asked the prison service to reconsider the decision,” but fully-restored funding may not be on its way. Time will tell where the chips will fall.

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