e: notaoffice@nota.co.uk | e: conference@nota.co.uk

NOTA INTERNATIONAL BIRMINGHAM CONFERENCE 2024 ​

Book your Breakouts

Please read through the breakouts further down the page before choosing your suitable breakouts.

2024 Breakout Presentations

Wednesday 1st May - 1.30pm - 3.00pm

A1 - 4 x Research Presentation Chair: TBC

1. Untold stories of safety, risk and children’s rights: Listening to young people who have displayed HSB

Lynne Cairns - PhD researcher - Centre for Research into Violence and Abuse, Durham University

There is a tendency in research, policy and practice around issues of harmful sexual behaviour (HSB) to focus on individual level factors. Yet young people don’t exist in social vacuums but in social and environmental contexts such as peer groups, schools and public spaces. The significant life space of ‘childhood’ and ‘adolescence’ hold both bio-psycho-social conditions for harm and abuse as well as critical opportunities for change and hope. Understanding that issues of HSB have contextual, relational and developmental dimensions allows us to be more curious as to social and environmental aspects harm can be disrupted and safety enhanced. Drawing on the storytelling medium of Pecha Kucha, Japanese for ‘chit chat’ and ‘the sound of conversation’, I will use images and stories to reflect on my PhD journey to learn from young people who have displayed HSB, and professionals, about perspectives of everyday life with a particular focus on social, physical and relational sources of safety, risk, harm and Children’s Rights. I will reflect on my rationale and research design embedding abuse sensitive and rights respecting principles to support young people, seldom ‘heard’ in research, to participate. I will share some stories from young people and professionals that challenge us to consider social and contextual dimensions of safety and risk including holding a mirror up to our systems and practice. To conclude I will reflect on different ways we can consider our role in enhancing safety, reducing risk and upholding rights that can contribute to prevention and responses to young people when we are concerned about their sexual behaviour.

2. Focusing on Early Intervention: An Evaluation of Mid-Sized London Charity’s HSB Project

Anna Hutchings - Social Worker - University of Sussex

Professor Kristine Langhoff - Social Worker - University of Sussex

In 2021, a pan-London charity re-launched their HSB project, concentrating on the age group 11 to 18-year-olds exhibiting lower-level sexualised behaviours. This initiative harnessed collaborative partnerships with educational institutions, social care agencies, and various community-based services. It adopted an approach informed by the AIM3 framework, trauma-informed and strength-based approaches to engage with children and adolescents manifesting problematic sexual behaviours. In conjunction with the University of Sussex, a comprehensive three-year evaluation was conducted. This approach involved conducting interviews with a diverse range of stakeholders, including referrers, parents, young people, and practitioners. Additionally, analysis of case files and assessments provided valuable insights into the project's work. The findings of this evaluation illuminate several key facets of the project's role within the community. They shed light on the unique space occupied by charitable organizations in the realm of early intervention for harmful sexual behaviours. Moreover, the study underscores the significance of addressing social capital deficits, particularly within community settings, as a pivotal area of concern. The evaluation also emphasizes the project's nuanced responsiveness to the individual needs of children, taking into account factors such as ethnicity and culture.

3. No two safeguarding journeys are the same: exploring children and young people’s safeguarding journeys in the context of child sexual exploitation

Safina Bi - Doctoral Researcher - University of Birmingham

Child sexual exploitation has become an area of widespread interest over the past twenty years (RIP, 2015; 2017). The publication of specific government guidance on safeguarding children and young people from sexual exploitation in 2009 was the first time the term ‘child sexual exploitation’ was introduced into UK social policy contexts and discourses (DCSF, 2009). Since then, there have been numerous attempts to develop effective safeguarding interventions and responses, largely informed by high profile criminal investigations and serious case reviews, and which have most recently culminated in the development of terminology and approaches referred to as extra familial risks and harms and contextual safeguarding (Firmin, 2017, 2020, 2022; Lefevre 2022). This presentation explores children and young people’s child sexual exploitation safeguarding journeys in the context of changing approaches to policy and practice frameworks, and the Covid-19 pandemic. It aims to interrogate the gap between policy and practice, presenting insights from what child sexual exploitation safeguarding policies and procedures say should happen, and what actually happens in practice. Drawing on 17 interviews with therapeutic practitioners working in the field, conducted virtually during the initial lockdown of 2020, this presentation argues that despite growing numbers of policies and procedures aiming to improve safeguarding responses to child sexual exploitation, children and young people’s safeguarding journeys continue to vary and differ in practice. The presentation argues that to effectively improve the safeguarding experiences of children and young people, policy makers, practitioners and services need to have a greater understanding of not only what happens in actual safeguarding journeys but also of wider issues which impact. For example, the ways in which definitions, power imbalances, voice and participation, and systems interact to shape experiences of child sexual exploitation safeguarding in practice. The presentation concludes by making recommendations for child sexual exploitation safeguarding practice.

4. Experiences from development and preliminary results from the implementation of a competence program for school nurses regarding prevention of harmful sexual behaviour

Oddfrid Skorpe Tennfjordi - Phd, clinical psychologist - RVTS Midt

Marita Sandvik - Md senior advisor - RVTS Midt

Background: The presentation will present the development of a competence program for school nurses/public health nurses, and the preliminary findigs from the implementation of the program. The program was initiated by the Norwegian Directorate of Health. Developed by RVTS (Resource center on trauma, violence and suicide prevention) in 2023. Implementation process nov 2023 – des 2024. The program is part of a larger low threshold intervention program. Aim of the competence program: Promote healthy sexual behaviour and prevent problematic and harmful sexual behaviour. Strenghten the help to adolescents showing problematic and harmful sexual behaviour. The program consists of 2 moduls: A: E-learning (1 day) – mandatory completion before B B: Lunch – to – lunch – seminar Includes training in «Spør først!» (Ask first!) - an educational program about sexuality and relations to be used in classes, led by the school nurse in cooperation with the teachers. Discussion: The program was developed in cooperation with the National directorate of Health, the labour union organising the school nurses (Landsgruppa for helsesykepleiere), which was very important for the further implementation process. The participants will be given a survey before and after attending. Preliminary results from this will be included in the presentation. Further implications will be discussed

A2 - Workshop 90 Minutes

Working with Caregivers of Adolescents Who Have Engaged in Harmful Sexual Behaviour and Working Jointly with Children with Sexual Behaviour Problems and Their Caregivers

Jacqueline Page - Professor, Clinical Psychologist-Health Service Provider - University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Psychiatry

The research and literature support the importance of caregiver’s involvement when working with children with sexual behavior problems as well as when working with adolescents who have engaged in harmful sexual behaviour. As professionals we recognize the need for the caregiver being involved; however, the caregiver’s response can range from being receptive to being resistant. We are tasked with navigating the different responses and helping them feel a part of the team. While youth and families vary in their own experiences, strengths and needs our main goals remain the same. The overarching goal of preventing sexual abuse is supported by the goal of the youth having a healthy, non-abusive life. A healthy trajectory supports them continuing to move forward after our involvement ends. This session utilizes a framework of working with caregivers that the presenter refers to as the four Es (Engage, Educate, Equip, Empower). Strategies for engaging the caregiver and supporting their active involvement will be discussed. Some of these are based on what we know about therapeutic engagement and motivational interviewing, some are strengths based and others are direct feedback from caregivers. The session also examines what caregivers need to learn about related to their youth’s problematic sexual behaviour as well as areas supporting healthy family functioning or individualized issues may be present. Areas of focus related to children will be discussed and areas related to adolescents will be reviewed. Multi-modal ways to present content to caregivers will be shared including input provided by caregivers. Some interventions/exercises to help caregivers develop and strengthen skills needed to support their youth and healthy family dynamics will be demonstrated. The session also addresses building the caregiver’s confidence and comfort level in decisions related to safety and in using skills and new techniques. The session welcomes questions, discussion and sharing of ideas.

Learning Objectives: 1) Participants should be able to identify at least two strategies for engaging the caregiver in treatment. 2) Participants should be able to discuss two components of safety planning. 3) Participants should be able to two factors related to caregiver’s hesitancy in actively participating in treatment.

A3 - Combined Workshop 90 Minutes - 30 minutes each

1. Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse in Schools: A Place-Based Approach

Alice Dutton, Research and Evaluation Officer - NSPCC

Stephanie Talbut, Associate Head of Research and Evidence - NSPCC

Claire White, Senior Research and Evaluation Officer - NSPCC

Together for Childhood (TfC) is a place-based initiative that focuses on preventing child sexual abuse. As part of this, TfC works with young people to support them to feel confident in knowing what abuse is and where they can go for help and support. TfC also works with young people to understand their views on how adults can help to keep them safe from abuse. Engaging with young people via schools is a crucial part of TfC as schools sit at the heart of communities, link with other statutory services and provide opportunities for learning and participation through Relationships and Sex Education lessons (RSE). Evaluation and research within TfC has demonstrated the importance of learning from schools and young people about how to work effectively as part of a place-based approach to prevent child sexual abuse. This presentation will showcase findings from the Young Person’s Knowledge, Attitudes and Behaviours (KAB) research which aimed to understand what young people think, know and do about sexual abuse. Findings demonstrated that a holistic approach to prevention leads to better outcomes for preventing child sexual abuse. This presentation will also draw on key learning from other participatory research with young people conducted as part of TfC. For example, the Young Voices programme which demonstrated the power in encouraging young people to develop their own materials for delivering RSE. Underpinning all these findings is the role that schools can play in empowering young people and ensuring that adults are equipped to support and respond to child sexual abuse, as it is everyone’s responsibility to keep young people safe. By doing this, a culture of prevention can be created that can reduce the occurrence and impact of abuse.

2. Safety Planning in Education: Improving the response to incidents of harmful sexual behaviour

Lorraine Myles, Practice Improvement Advisor - Centre of expertise on child sexual abuse (CSA Centre)

Both the (2021) Ofsted (in England) and Estyn (in Wales) reviews of sexual abuse in education settings revealed the extent of sexual harassment and abuse of children and young people in schools, perpetrated by other children and young people. Schools were advised to identify concerns early and respond to both the child who was harmed, and the child who had harmed. Despite this, there has been limited advice and guidance for schools and other children’s settings to support them with this work. Having identified this, the Centre of expertise on child sexual abuse (CSA Centre) developed their free Safety Planning in Education guide. The hope is that if the education workforce and other settings where children spend time, and their statutory and non-statutory partners, are better equipped to respond in these situations, children impacted by harmful sexual behaviour, both those who have been harmed or those who have harmed, will receive the right support When this can be done in a timely way and with confidence, not only can we better manage risk ‘in the moment’ but we can reduce the risk of further harmful sexual behaviour taking place. In this session, one of the authors of the CSA Centre’s Safety Planning in Education guide, will share practical advice on how those in education settings (or in agencies supporting education settings) can best respond to children’s needs and safety when incidents of harmful sexual behaviour occur. Using examples of how the guide has been used in practice across a variety of different education settings over the last year, attendees will explore the guide, using case examples to trial the safety plan template, as well as gaining practical advice such as how to communicate with children and their parents in these circumstances and how wider agency individuals can best support schools.

3. “Safeguarding against harmful sexual behaviour in schools” - A combined presentation of clinical experiences, scientific findings, and new practice initiatives from Norway

Kjersti Draugedalen, Advisor, PhD, low threshold service for mental health- Tønsberg municipality

Helle Kleive, Clinical psychologist- private practice

According to WHO (2017), sexual abuse of children and young people is defined as a worldwide public health challenge. What is often less known is that a large proportion of the abuse is carried out by other children and young people, currently estimated to be between 30-70% in various countries (Gerwitz-Meydan & Finkelhor, 2020; McKibbin & Humphreys, 2021). Children and young people in Norway report that they do experience harmful sexual behaviour (abbreviated HSB) from their peers to a large extent, particularly in school (Bakken, 2022; Frøyland et al., 2023). According to the UN's (1989) Convention on the Rights of the Child, HSB constitutes a clear violation of children's rights to protection and a safe environment. Nevertheless, a dilemma often arises because the sexual offense occurs between children, where the child/young person who exhibits HSB may need extensive help. As a universal arena with a designated mandate to protect children through a safe environment, the school system could be in unique a position to safeguard against HSB. However, primary school teachers in the study that this presentation draws upon report that they struggle to differentiate between healthy, problematic and harmful sexual behaviour among students, lack training and competence, and are often unsure of who to involve if HSB occurs in school (Draugedalen, 2021). Under such circumstances, teachers’ safeguarding role is perceived as an overwhelming responsibility (Draugedalen, Kleive & Grov, 2021). Simultaneously, services that cooperate with schools report similar variations in competence, procedures, and cooperation (Draugedalen, 2023). The presentation proposes a way forward for strengthening teachers’ safeguarding role through enhanced interdisciplinary cooperation within the school arena. Drawing on clinical experiences from Norwegian HSB expertise combined with new initiatives and scientific research from primary schools in Norway, the presenters introduce a potential structure for interdisciplinary cooperation within the school arena.

A4 - Workshop 90 Minutes

Research into practice: a plenary session on tackling sibling sexual abuse in the UK and beyond

Natasha Sabin - Practice Improvement Advisor - The Centre of expertise on child sexual abuse

Stuart Allardyce - Director - Lucy Faithful Foundation

Alejandro Astorga - Deputy Director - Corporacion Opción

Sexual abuse involving child siblings is a global problem, and a common form of intra-familial child sexual abuse so all professionals working in health and social care need to be prepared to work with people affected by sibling sexual behaviour and abuse, including children and adult survivors This involves understanding the nature and consequences of the abuse and being able to assess and manage different kinds of situations involving sibling sexual behaviour in order to provide appropriate support for all family members affected, and to help them move on from harm and distress. Sibling sexual abuse presents an unusual problem in that the individual who has harmed and the individual who has been harmed are not only both children, but children of the same family. This 90-minute workshop will be chaired by Stuart Allardyce and will feature two x 40-minute presentations. 1. The results of a recent study from Chile (2023), which looks at the nature and scale of sibling sexual abuse cases known to services as well as the characteristics of the participating children and of the whole family system in which these behaviours arise. In the presentation we will discuss how this data allow us to establish specific guidelines for the evaluation and intervention process (Alejandro Astorga). 2. A presentation of the Centre of expertise on child sexual abuse 2023 practice resource ‘Sibling sexual behaviour: A summary guide to responding to inappropriate, problematic and abusive behaviour’. Recent research (King-Hill et al., 2022) has highlighted that while professionals often have existing skills to manage such situations, they commonly report a lack of knowledge or experience to feel confident they are able to do so effectively. The CSA Centre’s new guidance was authored by Peter Yates and Stuart Allardyce and in this session, we will talk attendees through a range of approaches they can take to negotiate the complexities and challenges that sexual behaviours between siblings may raise. (Natasha Sabin) The international nature of the workshop means that we will ringfence time to explore different practice responses to this issue in different jurisdictions and what professionals in the UK can learn from a more international perspective on this subject.

A5 - Workshop 90 Minutes

The challenges of carrying out risk assessments on those with alleged or unproven harmful sexual behaviour

Emma King - Head of Clinical Services (Adults) - The Lucy Faithfull Foundation

Vicki Wynn - Senior Practitioner Adult Assessment and Interventions - The Lucy Faithfull Foundation

When an individual has been convicted of harmful sexual behaviour, there are a number of empirically supported risk factors to assist practitioners in assessing risk, and developing interventions to keep those at risk safe. Assessing risk is often imperative to ensure that children can be safeguarded, and risk managed appropriately and proportionately. However, how can we work with an individual who has not received any convictions for sexual offences? Where an allegation has been made but not reported, or where an investigation has resulted in no further action? This situation is common for professionals working in safeguarding and other settings, who may lack confidence in defensible decision making when harmful sexual behaviours are unproven. At the Lucy Faithfull Foundation, we are often asked to prepare assesments and interventions for such individuals, and in this workshop, we will share our experience of working with this client group. In this workshop, we will discuss the challenges of assessing ‘unconvicted’ individuals. We will consider: • Referral barriers and challenges • Strategies for engaging clients who have not been convicted • Assessment: Who, what and why? • Tools and frameworks The Faithfull Classification System (FACS) and Risk of Sexual Violence Protocol (RSVP) v2 • Utilising the available evidence base and presenting report findings Group exercises and case studies will provide attendees with an opportunity to apply learning, and consider how this can be utilised in their practice.

A6 - Workshop 90 Minutes

Tailored Treatment for Diverse Clients: Three intervention approaches used by NIAPP DNE in the treatment of a diversity of young people who have engaged in HSB.

Lisa O’Loghlen - Director of NIAPP DNE - NIAPP DNE

Aaron Swift - Principal Specialist Psychologist - NIAPP DNE

Susan Quain - Assistant Psychologist - NIAPP DNE

NIAPP is a national specialised clinical service which provides multidisciplinary advice, consultation, assessment and treatment interventions to children and young people who have exhibited harmful sexual behaviour and their families/carers. NIAPP also supports other professionals in their ongoing work with these populations, including delivering training and aiding residential centres. In this breakout session, the NIAPP Dublin North East (DNE) team will present three key aspects of their service provision and research: 1) Mixed Methods Comparative Study: We will present the results and findings of our recent mixed methods comparative study titled "A Journey Through NIAPP DNE: A Mixed Methods Comparative Study Between Children in Care and Children in the Community." This study provides insights into the experiences of young people in different contexts and explores the effectiveness of NIAPP's group interventions. 2) Group Intervention for young people with SEND: We will present on our ongoing evaluation study of the 'Keep Safe Group Intervention for young people with intellectual disabilities who have engaged in harmful sexual behaviour.' This study assesses the impact and efficacy of this intervention for our clients with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). 3) Case Study: We will present a case study of an individualised 1-to-1 intervention with a female client. In summary, this presentation will provide an overview of NIAPP's diverse interventions aimed to meet the needs of the variety of young people referred to our service. The presentation will include research findings as well as descriptions of group interventions, and individualized care.

A8 - Symposium 90 min

Developmental Trajectories in Individuals Having Committed Acts of Sexual Aggression

Jean Proulx - Professor - University of Montreal

Alexandre Gauthier - Doctoral candidate - University of Montreal

Étienne Garant - Doctoral candidate - University of Montreal

In this symposium, we will present three papers related to different developmental trajectories among males and females having committed acts of sexual aggression. In the first presentation, we will describe the results of a systematic literature review on the trajectories culminating in diverse sexual offence modus operandi. Based on 23 empirical studies, we found seven trajectories. Some are found across all groups of people having committed sexual offences (escaping negative mood), some are specific to men having sexually offended against women (sadistic, angry), and one was specific only to women having sexually offended against children (direct avoidant). The second presentation will discuss a model of inadequate coping strategies among men having committed sexual offences against women. The model was developed using structural equation modelling in a sample of 205 incarcerated men. The results indicated several direct and indirect trajectories leading to reliance on deviant sexual fantasies as a coping strategy. The third presentation will be based on a study of inadequate coping strategies (deviant sexual fantasies, substance misuse) among men having committed sexual offences against children. Theoretical and clinical implications of the research findings will be discussed.

A9 - Workshop 90 Minutes

Relationships, sex and health education: Ideology vs research How RSHE is key component in the prevention and early detection of child sexual abuse and harmful sexual behaviour.

Sophie King-HIll - Associate Professor - University of Birmingham

This workshop will explore relationships, sex and health education (RSHE) and its links to reducing and preventing child sexual abuse (CSA) and harmful sexual behaviour (HSB). The contentious nature of talking about RSHE with children and young people (CYP) will be explored – looking at perceptions of CYP and their agency and how this plays out in RSHE curriculums. The context of the UK RSHE will be given – and the current fraught and contested nature of this topic will be discussed. The links between shame, pleasure and normative sexual behaviours will be outlined and the impact this has on inhibiting conversations about sexual behaviours in wider society. Issues of consent – in all genders - will be discussed. Sexual harassment in schools, work with boys and youth voice will be covered. Examples will be drawn from work research carried out by Sophie in relation to her work with young people and sexual behaviours. This will be framed around the inability of wider society to talk about sex as a whole and how this negatively impacts upon RSHE and the preventative role it can play in CSA and HSB.

Wednesday 1st May - 3.30pm - 5.00pm

B1 - 4 x Research Presentation Chair: TBC

1. Qualitative Survivor Reports of Child Sexual Abuse Disclosure and Non-Disclosure: The Positives, and the Negatives

Julia Rudolph - Postdoctoral Research Fellow - University of Greenwich

This paper is currently in preparation, and the results presented here a preliminary. Child sexual abuse (CSA) is a crime characterised by secrecy and silence, with victim disclosure the most common pathway to discovery. Rather than a discrete, one-off event, disclosure is a complex and challenging process, that may include delays, numerous disclosure partners and possible recantations. Here we present the qualitative results of a university sample of 279 students (90% female, 76% White), in which participants described their disclosure experiences. Several positive and negative themes associated with disclosure emerged, in addition to participant-identified facilitators that assisted disclosure. Reasons for delayed-or-nondisclosure include struggling to name the abuse as abuse; reactions of others; feelings of shame, embarrassment and culpability; and protecting relationships. Positive outcomes of disclosure were relief, processing, learning and closure; and stopping the abuse. Understanding the disclosure process is important to both encourage victims to disclose earlier, support victims with early therapeutic services, and potentially prevent re-victimization.

2. "Gender ‘neutral’ or Gender ‘sensitive’?: British Female Social Workers’ Understandings and experiences of working with boys and young men who display harmful sexual behaviours

Anna Hutchings - Social Worker - University of Sussex

Professor Kristine Langhoff - Social Worker - University of Sussex

In the UK, social work is a ‘female majority profession’ (McPhail 2004) and as such, most of the social work practice with boys and young men in respect of HSB will be undertaken by female social workers. Alongside this, those who sexually harm are mostly male children and adults (Hackett, 2014). Intervention approaches to HSB tend to be ‘gender-blind’ and rarely address ideas of gender inequality and harmful expressions of masculinity (Allardyce et al, 2021). This PhD research project offers a qualitative exploration of how UK female social workers consider ideas of gender in their practice with boys and young men with HSB. An IPA methodology using semi-structed interviews was employed to gain insight into the experiences of 10 female social workers from both HSB specialist and non-specialist practice settings. These data were triangulated with a year-long ethnography of an online mixed-sex group supervision of social workers and other professionals working with HSB. Analysis revealed that female social workers’ individual experiences influenced both how they thought about gender (in respect of themselves and the boys and young men they encountered in their work), and the specific ways in which they attempted to acknowledge, explore and challenge gendered beliefs and attitudes in their relationships with boys and young men who display HSB. This research contributes to understandings of how gender may influence practice in HSB and offers insights into how practitioners might negotiate and communicate about issues of gender inequalities with boys and young men.

3. Ecosystems of care: an approach to addressing child sexual abuse in Southeast Asian communities in the UK

Janelle Rabe - PhD Researcher - Centre for Research into Violence and Abuse, Durham University

Child sexual abuse is an urgent concern within Southeast Asian communities in the UK. However, there appears to be a glaring gap of research that features the distinct experiences of Southeast Asian children. Our co-authored paper will highlight the lesser-heard and much-needed perspectives of Southeast Asian communities in the UK in relation to child sexual abuse. It will elaborate on socio-cultural and structural factors like migration which may influence the disclosure of child sexual abuse and help-seeking behaviors among children and young people with Southeast Asian heritage in the UK. I will present the Philippines as a case study to provide a specific context. The insights and recommendations are drawn from my and my co-author’s collective experiences working on child sexual abuse in the Philippines and collaborating with Southeast Asian communities in the UK. Based on our practitioner experiences in the UK and Philippines, we offer practical recommendations aimed at enhancing child protection within these communities.

4. Is Child-Targeted Sexual Abuse Education Effective In Preventing Sexual Abuse?

Julia Rudolph - Postdoctoral Research Fellow - University of Greenwich

The effectiveness of child-targeted sex abuse education is usually measured in terms of knowledge gains; with the assumption that increased child knowledge about sexual abuse, and how to respond, will translate into identification, resistance, and disclosure of actual abuse experiences. However, knowledge is not necessarily a good indicator of behaviour, especially in the secretive, confusing, complex, and shameful context of child sexual abuse. This presentation reviews the seven studies that have been conducted since 1995, evaluating the association between child sexual abuse education and sexual abuse experiences. The results of these studies suggests that, on the balance of evidence, the main method of child sexual abuse prevention used today - victim targeted education – may not have the expected results. This review suggests that the sexual abuse prevention field may need to invest in identifying evidence-based prevention initiatives, effective in reducing rates of child sexual abuse.

B2 - Workshop 90 Minutes

Supporting neurodivergent young people that display Harmful Sexual Behaviour:- Providing practical intervention guidance and strategies for increasing emotional regulation skills.

Jodie Harrison - Clinical Lead – Family and Systemic Psychotherapist - Woodlands LTD

Hannah Parry - Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist - Woodlands LTD

Hannah Jones - Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist - Woodlands LTD

Woodlands is a holistic therapeutic environment that has shaped and developed its approach to supporting young people with neurodivergent needs who have displayed harmful sexual behaviours. Holistically accredited with the National Autistic Society, Woodlands have adapted a range of emotional regulation interventions to use with neurodivergent young people. This workshop will share practical intervention guidance, including sensory strategies, to support young people with their emotional regulation. Within this experiential workshop participants will have the opportunity to practice the interventions/sensory strategies presented.

B3 - Combined Workshop 90 Minutes - 45 minutes each

1. Let’s Talk: Addressing Sibling Sexual Abuse Within the Sibling Relationship

Linda Valenta - Principal Therapist - SAIFF (Support, Assessment & Intervention For Families)

Our responses to sibling sexual abuse continue to emphasis and promote an approach of separation in order to achieve safety and healing. Consequently, therapeutic interventions with children prioritize individual therapy with the child who has engaged in the harmful behavior and the sibling who has been harmed, and reparative interventions, if delivered at all, tend be introduced late in the treatment process and typically focus on an apology letter or a statement of responsibility. This workshop will introduce you to an innovative treatment approach that focuses on promoting accountability, communication, and reparation through a joint therapy process, which is introduced early in treatment and involves both the sibling who has engaged in the harmful behaviour and the sibling victim. Three stages of therapeutic contact will be explored: (1) Naming the problem (acknowledgements) (2) Learning about the problem (clarification) and (3) Being healthy and safe (consolidation). Using the images, words and stories of children and families, you will be introduced to a range of therapeutic interventions to engage children and parents in a process of communication and change and to promote healing and recovery of sibling and family relationships. We will consider some of the challenges in working with children in this way including individual and systemic barriers.

2. “Building and supporting competence in HSB and SA for professionals across all sectors and at every level. This is how we do it in Norway!"

Steinar Hvaal - Specialist in clinical psychology - RVTS Vest (Resource Center on Violence, Traumatic stress and Suicide prevention)

Mette Ekenes Garmannslund - Specialist in clinical psychology - RVTS Vest (Resource Center on Violence, Traumatic stress and Suicide prevention)

Children and young people who engage in harmful sexual behaviour and sexual abuse in general, is associated with taboo and reluctance to address. We’re making efforts to change this. RVTS Vest is a public regional resource centre on violence, traumatic stress and suicide prevention. Our task is to equip professionals working with adults, children and adolescents with the necessary knowledge, skills and tools within our expertise. Norway is a country characterized by a low population spread over great geographical distances. This makes it necessary to promote online and digitally assisted tools and resources. We’ll provide insight into some of the most important Norwegian online tools related to harmful sexual behaviour and sexual abuse. We hope that our work can serve as inspiration for others.

B4 - Combined Workshop 90 Minutes (45 min each)

1. Shore – Delivering a safe space for teenagers worried about sexual behaviours

Rachel Haynes - Senior Practitioner - Lucy Faithfull Foundation

Emily Ellison - LFF Assistant Psychologist - Lucy Faithfull Foundation

The Lucy Faithfull Foundation is delighted to share insights from the development of Shore, a unique website which aims to prevent harmful sexual behaviours amongst young people, launched in September 2023. This pioneering website provides a safe space for teenagers to navigate the complexities of sexual relationships and behaviour, offering reliable information and advice for a range of concerns related to both online and offline sexual behaviour. The platform offers an engaging and interactive experience, including a chat and email service for teenagers to seek advice and support on a variety of issues, including HSB, the law, online risks, and concerns about friends. This presentation will give an overview of the background and research that underpins the website and some of the lessons we learned from young people along the way. We will provide an overview how we have approached the evaluation of Shore and some early insights into its reach and effectiveness during the pilot phase. Of interest to those working directly with young people, or those developing resources for young people.

2. Banning Porn Won’t Work: A Conversation About Porn, Young People, and Harmful Sexual Behaviour

Francesca Burgess - HSB Specialist and Operational Lead - Harmful Sexual Behaviour Team, Norfolk County Council

Sarah Supple - Principal Counselling Psychologist and Clinical Lead - Harmful Sexual Behaviour Team, Norfolk County Council

Amy Byford - HSB Specialist Practitioner - Harmful Sexual Behaviour Team, Norfolk County Council HSB Specialist Practitioner

Lesley-Anne Bray - HSB Specialist Practitioner - Harmful Sexual Behaviour Team, Norfolk County Council HSB Specialist Practitioner

This workshop aims to facilitate a conversation about pornography and young people, considering the context of harmful sexual behaviour (HSB), and presenting up to date research and discourse on the topic. The workshop will explore the use of pornography by young people and responses to young people accessing porn. We will consider the current state of the porn industry, including developments in ethical porn, as well as developments in the evidence base of the intersection of porn and HSB for young people. The workshop will provide exploratory spaces for delegates to think about professional and societal attitudes towards porn and where these may arise from; share practice-based evidence; and consider what this all means for how we work with young people who access porn when there is or has been HSB present. We propose a 3 hour workshop to allow sufficient time for experiential and reflective activities facilitated in a safe and containing way, while also enabling adequate coverage of the topics named above.

B5 - Workshop 90 mins

“Risk Needs and Responsivity Plus”: the impact of recent developments in the treatment of men who sexually abuse, with specific reference to trauma.

Roger Kennington - Independent Consultant - Roger Kennington Consulting

Gail McGregor - Consultant Clinical Forensic Psychologist - CNTW NHS Foundation Trust

The Risk Needs and Responsivity Principle (RNR) has been a cornerstone of the treatment of adults who have committed offences since the late 1980s (Andrews, D.A., Bonta, J. and Hoge, R.D., 1990). It has also been regarded as important in reducing re offence rates for men who have committed sexual offences. (Hanson, R.K., Bourgon, G., Helmus, L., and Hodgson, S., 2009) There have been other developments since that time such as The Good Lives Model, Relapse Prevention, The Self Regulation Model, Desistance, Working with Deniers and Trauma Informed Care. These were considered by authors of the NOTA Individualised Treatment leading them describe their philosophy as “RNR plus”. This workshop will restate the original principles of Risk, Needs and Responsivity and consider how the more recent developments impact on its validity. The latter section of the presentation will focus on Trauma, with particular emphasis on its influence on the development of stable dynamic risk factors (formerly known as criminogenic needs) and implications for the treatment and management of these factors. There will be some didactic presentation as a focus for discussion, followed by the use of case study material.

B6 - Workshop 90 Minutes

Mapping a Therapeutic residential Intervention for HSB: A Theory of Change

Dr Kevin Gallagher - Managing Director - Amberleigh Care

This workshop presents PhD research completed in 2023 using Contribution Analysis (CA) as a method to understand the complex system that include multi-disciplinary and multi-agency working to respond to HSB in adolescent boys. In this complexity, with so many moving parts, with young people growing and developing in their time spent in a residential setting, the research created a Theory of Change – a framework to help describe how processes fit together and how young people (and staff in different roles) experienced the living/learning intervention, and how this changed over time. Drawing on the voices of lived experience, the research addresses the context and operating landscape, before focussing on the features, assumptions and supporting activities that need to be attended to in order to facilitate a relational response to trauma, including risk reduction for HSB specifically.

B7 - 1 x Research Presentation and 1 x 45 minute workshop

1. Research Presentation - A qualitative systematic review of the barriers and facilitators of the reintegration of sexual offenders from prison or secure care into the community.

Emma Tuschick - Teesside University

Background: In 2021 there were 95,844 registered sex offenders in England and Wales (1), and a total of 917,771 in the United States of America (2). Those who have been or are about to be released from prison will potentially need treatment, interventions, mental health support, accommodation, and employment to reduce the risk of recidivism and promote safe community reintegration. There is a need to fully identify and explore what can help or hinder the reintegration process to reduce reoffending rates and make recommendations to support men convicted of sexual offences through this process that is based on evidence and the needs of this offender group. This is particularly important when considering the high number of sexual offenses committed across the world and the impact this certain crime has upon individuals, communities, and society as a whole. Methods: A search of 16 electronic databases produced 14,218 potential sources, which after screening resulted in 79 articles for inclusion. Papers were included if they used qualitative research methods about the barriers, facilitators, perceptions, experiences, and attitudes toward community reintegration from prison or secure care for men convicted of sexual offenses. Included papers were critically appraised and the findings were thematically synthesized. Key findings: The findings identified that formal and cultural aspects of reintegration, such as probation services, stigmatization, and registration were the three largest barriers that men faced upon their release, with stability aspects, such as positive relationships, religion, and support groups being key facilitators to their successful reintegration. Implications: The implications for future research, and policy and practice, including prioritizing risk assessment and management, offering appropriate and timely treatment and rehabilitation, educating the community, better access to housing and employment, and services adopting a collaborative approach, will be discussed.

2. 45 minute workshop - Sexual offending and employability: examining the impact of self-disclosures at the application stage

Dr Cody Porter - Senior Lecturer in Psychology, University of the West of England (UWE) Bristol

Employability is important for reducing reoffending, and knowing when to disclosure a sexual offence is particularly challenging for candidates. This session will provide insights into the impact of self-disclosures of a prior sexual conviction during the application stage of recruitment. Our findings suggest that this can reduce overall rejection rates for those with a prior conviction of rape of an adult, sexual activity with a child, or possession of indecent images of children. To do this, we investigated public hiring decisions for a candidate with either no conviction or a prior sex conviction. Half of the participants (in the experimental conditions) were provided with a self-disclosure statement and half were not. Consistent with previous research we found that a prior sexual conviction resulted in candidates being perceived as less trustworthy, less valuable and suitability for the job than they were previously. Furthermore, a self-disclosure of a prior conviction led to fewer rejections (rape [self-disclosure 63% vs no disclosure 70%], sexual activity with a child [self-disclosure 52% vs no disclosure 84%], or possession of indecent images of children [self-disclosure 23% vs no disclosure 69%]. Decision making responses and implications for research and policy will be discussed during the talk.

B8 - Workshop 90 mins

What happened cannot be ignored, but you can learn to live with it. No one can understand and support you as well as another parent who has experienced the same." - The power of the You Are Enough™ peer support groups for parents whose children have fallen victims to CSA

Katariina Leivo MSc - (Developmental Psychology), Senior Specialist, Therapist, Protect Children

Nina Vaaranen-Valkonen - Executive Director of the Finnish charity ‘Protect Children’ (Suojellaan Lapsia)

Background One in five children in Europe falls victim to some form of sexual violence. A systematic review established one protective factor against revictimization: perceived parental care (Scoglio et al., 2021). Parents who have experienced sexual violence against their child, are burdened by challenging emotions, long criminal proceedings and lack of awareness of how to support their child with trauma symptoms. Protect Children has developed a manualised You Are Enough™ online peer support group for parents/guardians whose children have fallen victim to sexual violence.

Program goals The goal is to strengthen the ability of parents to support their child to cope with trauma and trauma symptoms during lengthy criminal proceedings and healing processes. Attending the groups improve the parents’ wellbeing and give them psychoeducation regarding topics such as trauma symptoms and healing, support services and criminal processes indirectly supporting the healing process of the victim and the whole family.

Program activities & evaluation The You Are Enough™ peer support groups are professionally facilitated peer-support that includes CBT-based tools and psychoeducation. The groups are held online and are formed based on the proximity of the offender (close one/outsider) or type of the offence (online/contact). Participants get a chance to discuss their thoughts, feelings and experiences with those in a similar situation. Groups include 5-8 participants with approximately ten online group sessions. Participants can sign up for an extension peer support group afterwards if necessary. According to anonymous pre- and post- surveys, 75% of participating parents feel that joining the You Are Enough™ group had a positive effect also on their child’s well-being. Participation increased participants’ knowledge and skills on noticing and addressing their child’s trauma symptoms or seeking additional support, if needed. All participants signified that their own mental well-being improved, and they felt significantly more optimistic about the future at the end of the group compared to the beginning.

Strengths and challenges The whole family is affected by the traumatic experiences. Child victims are usually offered support, however, targeted support services for parents, who often present with similar trauma symptoms to their children, are lacking. The improvement of a parent’s well-being, indicated by the anonymous pre- and post-surveys appeared to correlate with their child’s healing from the traumatic experience, likely due to the child restoring the sense of safety as the whole family gradually heals. The groups are arranged online, allowing people, especially those in more vulnerable positions, to access the service with their privacy respected even from remote locations. “Hearing the experiences and thoughts of other participants helped me process my own experiences. What we have been through could help someone else was also important to me.”

Next steps The group for parents of victims of online sexual crimes are being piloted in Ireland and Finland with extensive evaluation. Collecting invaluable information from parents help us to further understand the differences in impact of child sexual abuse with and without an online element. Once evaluated more thoroughly, the You are enough™ manualised model will be spread to other countries.

B9 - Workshop 90 mins

Social media and its role in preventing child sexual abuse

Jeremy Indika - Something to Say

Nancy Morris - psychologist - #SiblingsToo

Raising public awareness of child sexual abuse, preventing abuse before it happens, and improving outcomes for adult survivors are key aspects of how we tackle this problem of sexual abuse and exploitation of children. However all of these themes are increasingly impacted by the work of social media influencers. This workshop involves two adult survivors of child sexual abuse who have focused their online social media influencing on raising public awareness concerning this issue, including helping public audiences understand how and why sexual offending occurs. They will both have opportunities to share their work and learning through a guided conversation led by Ashley Scotland, CEO of Thriving Survivors. This will touch on the strengths and weaknesses of social media as a tool to raise public awareness about child sexual abuse and key messages they convey in their work along with the challenge of working in online spaces that are increasingly polarized and politicized in relation to aspects of sexual abuse prevention and work with sex offenders. The group will also discuss the challenges of having a public identity defined by the experience of being a survivor.

Thursday 2nd May - 1.30pm - 3.00pm

C2 - Combined Workshop 90 Minutes - (45 mins each)

1. How cybertrauma related to viewing CSAM by children is an Adverse Childhood Trauma and for adults (professionals) can be the same.

Catherine Knibbs - Cybertrauma Consultant, Psychotherapist & Researcher

The workshop will take participants through the theory behind cybertrauma and show how viewing CSAM material can invoke a trauma response that may or may not result in PTS symptoms, and later life complexities and can leave a legacy of trauma that is not necessarily understood by professionals nor part of a routine assessment process. The workshop will guide professionals in understanding what happens to an individual (child or adult) when viewing this material and how this can impact nervous system regulatory systems, neurobiology, and psychology. The impact of trauma throughout the child's life into adulthood can be understood when considering the viewing of CSAM material as a young person/child. The workshop will also provide adults with an understanding of how this material can and does impact them as adult professionals working in this space and considers the process of preventing burnout and compassion fatigue. Participants will be taken through an experiential learning process to help them integrate and understand cybertrauma from a professional perspective so they can take the frame of the child in a trauma informed and responsive manner.

2. Child sexual abuse in online contexts: what research tell us and how it can be used to support professionals working in this space.

Dr Jasmin Tregidga - Principal Research and Evaluation Officer - Centre of expertise on child sexual abuse

Sarah Brown - Adjunct Professor at the University of the Sunshine Coast, Australia, and a Visiting Fellow of the University of the West of England

In October 2023, the CSA Centre published two Key messages from research (KMfR) papers on: 1. child sexual abuse by adults in online contexts 2. harmful sexual abuse in online contexts This presentation highlights key findings from the two papers, both of which focus particularly on accessing, creating and sharing images of children. While difficult to separate ‘online’ and ‘in-person’ offending in police data, over one-third of sexual offences against children recorded by the police across England and Wales in 2021/22 were imagery offences. Children who have been sexually abused in online contexts report that they receive less support than victims of other forms of child sexual abuse. Sometimes professionals feel unable to help because they are not ‘experts’ in the technology, but the skills required to give an effective response are the same as for any form of child abuse: relationship-based practice, talking to children and accepting what they say. Specific interventions are needed for adults who have sexually abused children in online contexts. Although there are promising evaluations of two programmes – Inform Plus and Prevent It – this is an area requiring further development and evaluation. More effective prevention is essential, including designing technology platforms and resources to provide ‘safety by design’. Pop-up warnings and chatbots have been found to deter adults from offending, and to help them address their concerning thoughts and behaviours, and this is a growing area of research and interest. While not necessarily inappropriate, children’s involvement in sexual behaviour through technology is complex. In determining appropriate interventions for children who have harmed others in online contexts, professionals need to assess the full range of the child’s behaviours – both online and offline – and to try to understand the reasons for them. Education programmes to prevent harmful sexual behaviour can be effective, but they need to involve both school and the wider community, incorporate various approaches, involve repeated follow-ups, and actively engage children.

C3 - Workshop 90 Minutes

A new, multi-trajectory approach to the understanding and treatment of sexual violence in the Irish Prison Service (IPS)

Dr Ken Murphy - Senior Clinical Psychologist - Irish Prison Service

Sarah Hume - Principal Psychologist - Irish Prison Service

The Building Better Lives (BBL) Programme is the Sex Offender Treatment Programme delivered in the Irish Prison Service, which is based on the Canadian Rockwood Model and jointly delivered with the Probation Service. The Irish Prison Service has historically encountered significant difficulty with engaging sex offenders in treatment and there are many barriers to treatment, including strict inclusion/exclusion criteria for participation. Currently, people in custody have to admit sexually harmful behaviour and present as both moderate or high risk and demonstrate sufficient stability in terms of their mental health. This has resulted in very low participation rates in sex offender treatment programmes. Sexual violence, our understanding of it, and its assessment and treatment evolves over time. The Council of Europe (CoE) European Committee on Crime Problems (ECCP) have provided recommendations which represent the most up-to-date research and evidence on the reduction and prevention of sexual violence by whole-of Criminal Justice Agencies. Given the evidence that there are a multitude of causal pathways that lead to sexual violence and that sexual violence takes many forms, there is a move away from a ‘one-size-fits-all’ model of intervention. In line with above, the Irish Prison Service (IPS) has developed a new model of treatment for sexual violence to incorporate a multi-trajectory, person centred, and trauma informed approach. This will involve assessment at an early stage in their sentence to inform sentence management and treatment planning, a suite of intervention options to address a broader range of criminogenic needs and will include working with people in custody who deny and minimise their offence(s), are low, moderate or high risk, have shorter sentences and who have been diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Intellectual Difficulties. Treatment decisions are based on case formulations, which lead to individualised pathways of intervention that address specific risk factors and responsivity issues. These changes should witness significant reduction in the barriers to treatment, thereby significantly increasing access to sexual violence treatment. The purpose of this presentation is to present the model of treatment developed and update members on our approach.

C4 - Workshop 90 Minutes

How to Facilitate Skills Practice and Role Training in Groupwork and One-to-One Sessions

Clark Baim - Psychodrama Psychotherapist - Change Point Ltd

Skills practice and role training are key components of most personal change programmes, including groupwork and one-to-one sessions. Skills practice can be used at almost any stage of a programme to help participants develop a wide range of intra- and inter-personal skills. This 90-minute workshop will first offer participants brief coverage of seven different types of roles play and their uses. Participants will then practise facilitating simple skills practice with colleagues in the workshop. We will cover both intra- and inter-personal skills and the many facets of treatment and intervention where such practice can be useful. We will focus on the relevance of skills practice in working with people who have committed sexual offences, and we will also consider how skills practice can be used in other contexts. The workshop will be experiential, so please attend prepared to participate.

C5 - Workshop 90 Minutes

‘The role of polygraph testing with people convicted of sexual offences in the Probation Service’

Helen Walton - Head of Assessment and Management of Sexual - HMPPS

Mel Briggs - Senior Polygraph Development Manager - HMPPS

The Probation Service have used Polygraph testing as an important risk management tool since 2014 to strengthen the risk management of individuals released on licence who pose a high risk of harm and sexual reoffending. This 90 minute workshop will provide participants with a history of how polygraph testing was introduced into probation and will consider some of the common misconceptions about it’s use. We will explain the polygraph process, and use fictional case study material to demonstrate how we use the information we gather from a polygraph test in the management of people convicted of sexual offences under licence supervision in the community. We will explore the benefits that using polygraph testing has brought to how we manage high risk individuals, as well as our understanding of the limitations of polygraph testing and the safeguards that are in place to account for these limitations.

C6 - 4 x Research Presentation Chair: TBC

1. Intrafamilial sexual offending and intrafamilial abuse

Frederica Martina Martijn - MSc, Nottingham Trent University

Nicholas Blagden - Professor, Derby University

Around a third of sexual convictions constitute incestuous offending (e.g., Office for National Statistics, 2020). Incest is characterized by severe abuse (intrusive, starting young, and with long duration; Goodman-Delahunty & O’Brien, 2014), and dire mental health consequences for victims (Stroebel et al., 2012). However, there have been few substantial clinical and theoretical advances in the understanding or prevention of intrafamilial sexual offending. Current models centre antisociality and atypical sexual interest as the main factors driving sexual (re-) offending (Hanson & Morton-Bourgon, 2005). But men convicted of intrafamilial sexual offences score low on both of these dimensions (Seto et al., 2015). One of the most promising causal nexuses to explain intrafamilial sexual offending is familial (dys-) function and abuse. But, research on familial dysfunction and intrafamilial non-sexual abuse is notably absent in the sexual offending literature. This presentation aims to make a novel contribution to the intrafamilial sexual abuse literature by studying intrafamilial sexual abuse through the lens of intrafamilial abuse, exploring prevalence, non-sexual abuse, and familial, relational, and individual functioning in relation to intrafamilial child sexual abuse. This study presents the results of a proportionate meta-analysis of 39 studies (N = 5,941) and a comparative meta-analysis of 18 studies (N = 4,296). Results show that more than 40% of victims of intrafamilial child sexual abuse suffer additional non-sexual abuse (physical abuse, emotional abuse, neglect, and exposure to intimate partner violence). They experience more non-sexual abuse than victims of extrafamilial sexual abuse (RR = 1.34), and children who have not been victims of (intrafamilial) sexual abuse (RR = 1.81). They also present with more (albeit not all significant) problems regarding offence characteristics, sociodemographic factors, family structure and dysfunction, and parental and child vulnerabilities. The results indicate that we need to shift our understanding of intrafamilial sexual abuse to account for wider family dysfunction and abuse.

2. Intrafamilial Child Sexual Abuse and Harmful Sexual Behaviours: A Social Work Perspective and Retrospective Case File Analysis

Dr Stephanie Kewley - Liverpool John Moores University

Sharon Kelly - Knowsley Council

Dr Victoria Blinkhorn - Liverpool John Moores University

It is vital, social care services respond to children and families where there are concerns of intrafamilial child sexual abuse (CSA) and/or Harmful Sexual Behaviour (HSB) in a way that tackles both the complex needs of individual children and wider family needs. This is because intervening with and supporting the whole family, helps to not only safeguard and prevent future harm, but should help address generational/historic trauma, support recovery, and promote strengths within the family system. These needs are, however, inevitably complex and factors driving harm are often embedded within diverse family structures. Thus, it is vital we understand the extent of these multi-layered factors and how they might contribute towards intrafamilial CSA/HSB as well as examining social worker (SW) responses and experiences to these cases. This is particularly important as SWs report low levels of confidence and knowledge when working with families in which intrafamilial CSA/HSB concerns exist. Researchers at Liverpool John Moores University and SWs at Knowsley Local Authority co-designed a small study to examine SW responses to intrafamilial CSA/HSB. This work forms part of a wider collaboration with Cheshire and Merseyside Social Work Teaching Partnership which aims to increase the confidence and competence of SWs when responding to CSA. We aim to present findings from nine semi-structured interviews with SW practitioners and a retrospective case file analysis of 41 CSA/HSB recent cases. Our analysis highlights the challenges and barriers SW experience when working with these cases, as well as a unique insight of families at the individual level (including the person harmed or the person who caused harm) but at the family level too, including siblings who were not reported to be involved in harm, abusing and non-abusing caregivers, and where data was available extended family members.

3. 5WAVES: An International Resource for Information and Peer Support Around Sibling Sexual Trauma

Maria Socolof - President & Cofounder, 5WAVES, Inc.

Brandy Black - Cofounder, Website Author, 5WAVES, Inc.

Jane Epstein - Cofounder, Website Author, 5WAVES, Inc.

Hope Sittler - Cofounder, Website Author, 5WAVES, Inc.

Fiona Ward - Cofounder, Website Author, 5WAVES, Inc.

The charity 5WAVES, Inc., cofounded by five women with lived experience as either survivors or parents affected by sibling sexual trauma (SST), is positioned as a global hub for information and support around SST. This presentation will first highlight the services and supports that 5WAVES offers, followed by results from a research collaboration with Hebrew University of Jerusalem (HUJ) on the parents’ experience. 5WAVES moderates and/or participates in multiple support groups, collectively comprising over 1,600 members affected by SST. Thus, they are uniquely positioned to provide the voice of lived experience to inform research, social services, therapy, and policy development. Their research collaboration with HUJ surveyed parents to understand their first-hand experience upon learning of SST in their family. The survey population was drawn from 5WAVES’ support groups and their wider network. The results of the parent responses (n=58) indicate four overarching themes: (1) Parental trauma experience upon learning of sibling sexual trauma, (2) Initial and continual parental emotional responses to the trauma, (3) Breakdown of the family and (4) Parental attempts at coping. These results recognize the unique trauma experienced by parents where SST occurred in their family. It acknowledges the crucial need for clinicians, professionals, family and friends to support parents during this time in order that they can best support their children and family. Direct quotes from parent respondents will be shared.

4. Re-thinking Parents as Child Sexual Abuse (CSA) Prevention Educators: Four Studies and a New Direction

Julia Rudolph - Postdoctoral Research Fellow - University of Greenwich

The primary focus of child sexual abuse (CSA) prevention has been child-education; teaching children about CSA and the relevant self-protection skills. Parental involvement has been limited, with parents’ roles restricted to that of educators. However, research suggests that many parents avoid teaching their children about the specifics of sexual abuse, preferring to discuss strangers and abduction dangers. This paper presents the results of 4 studies with Australian parents and young people, confirming previous research, that parents may be ineffectual CSA educators. The research also suggests that the variables most targeted by prevention campaigns to encourage parents to educate their children (i.e., increasing knowledge, risk appraisal and confidence) may be ineffectual. The findings of these four studies suggest that parents may be better employed as protectors rather than educators.

C7 - Symposium 90 Minutes

Addressing the impact of childhood trauma to prevent sexual abuse: the role of psychological formulation and therapy.

Dr Lisa Wright - Consultant Clinical Psychologist, Mersey Forensic Psychology Service, Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust

Jo Dodsworth - Forensic Psychologist, Mersey Forensic Psychology Service, Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust

Elliw Glyn - Forensic Psychologist, Mersey Forensic Psychology Service, Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust

Dr Trixie Mottershead - Clinical Psychologist, Mersey Forensic Psychology Service, Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust

The link between childhood trauma and sexual offending is receiving more attention, with the increasing utilisation of trauma informed or trauma focused interventions for those who pose a risk of sexual harm. Mersey Forensic Psychology Service (MFPS), Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust, has been using psychological formulation and therapy to understand and alter the impact of childhood trauma for over 20 years. Schema Therapy and Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) are currently used with a range of service users. These approaches allow us to understand the links from trauma to offending and protection issues and to reduce or eliminate the impact of trauma on current functioning by re-processing traumatic memories. This symposium will describe the use of psychological formulation and trauma re-processing therapy in working with the following client groups: the non offending partners (or ex partners) of males who pose a risk of sexual harm to children, adult males who have experienced childhood sexual abuse and gone on to commit sexual offences against children and minor attracted persons (male and female) seeking help to prevent sexual offending. This will also include a case study describing the EMDR change process.

Presentation 1 - Abstract. (Jo Dodsworth and Trixie Mottershead) Addressing the impact of early trauma on the ability to protect children from sexual harm in Non Offending Partners Interventions for the Non Offending Partners (NOPs) of adults who pose a risk of sexual harm to children aim to improve the NOPs’ ability to protect their children from this potential harm. These interventions often consist of education on child sexual abuse and its consequences, guidance on how to safely supervise contact between children and partner and can also include elements of peer support. However, when the NOP has experienced childhood trauma, this may also need addressing as it can influence the individual’s capacity to fully engage, learn and/or put learning into practice. The trauma reported by NOPs attending MFPS includes emotional, physical and sexual abuse, attachment disruption and peer rejection. These experiences result in a range of consequences for the individual that can influence their attachment patterns, relationship dynamics and subsequently the ability to protect their children from sexual abuse. This presentation will describe how the NOP intervention at MFPS identifies and addresses these issues in relation to risk management, helping each participant to become more aware of their own attachment style and patterns of interaction in the relationship with their (ex)partner in order to help them identify and manage potential barriers to safe supervision.

Presentation 2 - Abstract. (Elliw Glyn) From abused to abuser: factors influencing the relationship between experiencing childhood sexual abuse and perpetrating sexual abuse of children. It is well established within the literature that child sexual abuse is associated with significant short- and long-term consequences. Studies have also investigated the prevalence of childhood sexual abuse in adolescent and adult sexual offenders, leading to discussions of the concept of “sexually abused-abuser hypothesis”, the “victim-offender cycle”, or the “victim-to-victimiser cycle”. These models and concepts tend to be descriptive in nature and, for sexual offenders who have experienced their own childhood sexual abuse, understanding the relationship between their own abuse and offending and is often unclear. The present study aims to examine this relationship further by identifying the factors that have influenced the relationship between childhood sexual abuse and later sexual offending in MFPS service users, including the nature of the offences, how the offenders perceived their own childhood sexual abuse, their age when subjected to child sexual abuse and the age(s) of their victim(s), and their experiences of other adverse childhood experiences.

Presentation 3 – Abstract. (Lisa Wright) Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) to alter sexual attraction to children: a case study This presentation will describe the process of EMDR with one adult male (Paul) who had committed a range of contact and internet sexual offences against a number of children. Collaborative psychological formulation had identified the on-going impact of emotional and sexual childhood trauma as having contributed to sexual attraction to children and the commission of sexual offending. This individual had previously completed standard offence focused intervention and had continued to experience a sexual attraction to children following this. EMDR is a therapy designed to alter the cognitive, emotional and physiological impact of traumatic experiences, leading to more adaptive perceptions of the experience and the elimination of problematic thoughts, feelings and physical sensations. It has been used in mental health services for over 20 years and more recently been used in forensic settings. EMDR was used to enable Paul to re-process memories of his childhood sexual abuse. This led to changes in his perceptions of these experiences; from having seen it as consenting, loving, enjoyable and sexually arousing to perceiving what happened to him as abuse. He also reported the loss of his sexual attraction to children. Paul recognised that he had suppressed any negative views of his abuse, including memories of painful or distressing incidents in order to maintain his coping perception of a loving relationship with his abuser. This presentation will describe the change process and the implications of this; coming to terms with the realisation of having been abused and the subsequent awareness that he had traumatised others.

Presentation 4 - Abstract. (Jo Dodsworth and Trixie Mottershead) A trauma focused approach to working with sexual attraction to children in a Prevention Service; reflections on five years of delivering a therapeutic service to prevent sexual offending. The Prevention Service provided within MFPS was developed in 2018 in collaboration with Merseyside Police as a means of preventing individuals who were experiencing a sexual attraction to children from offending. This service was designed for any adult who has not committed a contact or internet sexual offence but feel that they may be at risk of doing so without intervention. It includes sexual arousal to children, violence, psychological harm or other unhealthy/inappropriate behaviours. A large proportion of individuals referred to our service do so due to experiencing sexual thoughts and feelings towards children. The understanding of the needs and clinical presentations of minor attracted persons (MAPs) is still evolving, with much emphasis in the existing literature placed on the difficulties that these individuals experience with regards to stigmatisation and lack of support structures. Many of the interventions available to these individuals place an emphasis on supporting them to live with the implications of their sexual interests rather than attempting to change them. Within this presentation we discuss our experience of developing collaborative psychological formulations with MAPs within which the origin of their sexual interests can be understood. We will reflect on the prevalence of traumatic experience in the background of these MAPs and describe the use of trauma focused therapy approaches (specifically EMDR and Schema Therapy) to alter the emotional and sexual factors linked to those sexual interests. We will provide feedback from participants regarding the impact of the trauma focused therapy on their sexual thoughts and feelings.

C8 - Workshop 90 Minutes

Michael will be expanding on his keynote The prevalence of child sexual abuse perpetration

Michael Salter - University of New South Wales, Australia

The international perpetration prevalence survey: Characteristics, risk factors, and policy and practice implications This workshop will provide a deeper dive into the findings of the international perpetration prevalence survey, and invite feedback and discussion from participants based on their professional and practice experiences. Particular areas of focus for the workshop will include questions arising from the survey findings such as: How can we change lifetime pathways to the abuse of children? How can we engage better and earlier with men at risk of abusing children? How do we better protect children from premeditated offenders of apparently “good character”? The workshop will be structured around data presentations and dialogue, with the aim of informing future research outputs and iterations of the survey.

C9 - Workshop 90 Minutes

Participation is protective! Children’s Rights as a framework for HSB practice

Simon Hackett. - Professor of Child Abuse and Neglect - Centre for Research into Violence and Abuse, Durham University

Janelle Rabe - PhD Researcher , Centre for Research into Violence and Abuse, Durham University

Lynne Cairns - PhD Researcher/Social Worker - Centre for Research into Violence and Abuse, Durham University

There is a notable absence of focus on children’s rights in research, policy and practice around issues of harmful sexual behaviour (HSB). While rights respecting frameworks gather pace in many other areas of child welfare policy and practice, the field of HSB has arguably overlooked, underplayed or limited how we can uphold the rights of children and young people. The right to participation is a central component in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) and is often regarded as a means through which other rights are realised. This interactive workshop aims to highlight the importance of children’s rights and participation in work with children and young people who display HSB. We will first consider aspects of UNCRC, including the relationship between participation and protection, and what these may mean for practice with children and young people who have displayed HSB. We will explore different ways through which we can respect rights and enhance participation including in language, context, processes. Throughout the workshop we will reflect on our own work to share approaches, opportunities and challenges of supporting safe and meaningful participation. We invite participants to engage through a range of interactive exercises which seek to reflect, exchange practice wisdom and develop perspectives towards becoming braver in how we can embed the rights of children and young people into HSB research, policy and practice.

Thursday 2nd May - 3.30pm - 5.00pm

D1 - 4 x Research Presentation Chair: TBC

1. Designing self-help programmes for the prevention of child sexual abuse material (CSAM) offences: Focus-groups and interviews with individuals who have used CSAM.

Dr Erifili Efthymiadou - Head of Research and Evaluation, The Lucy Faithfull Foundation

Dr Sarah Wefers - Practitioner-Researcher, The Lucy Faithfull Foundation

Child sexual abuse (CSA) is a global public health concern, associated with significant psychosocial and socioeconomic impacts. It is important that CSA prevention target the production, distribution, and/or consumption of child sexual abuse material (CSAM) offences, increasing exponentially over the years. Individuals exclusively engaging in CSAM offences differ from individuals with a history of contact CSA, demonstrating lower levels of antisociality and higher levels of empathy and self-control that may act as barriers to offending. They might, therefore, lend themselves more favourably to prevention efforts. The current study aims to qualitatively explore views of individuals who committed CSAM offences on prevention resources hosted on the Stop It Now! UK and Ireland Get Help website. Findings will inform the update of Get Help resources for improved prevention capacity.

2. An international e-Delphi study on the design and evaluation of self-help programmes for the prevention of child sexual abuse material (CSAM) offences

Dr Erifili Efthymiadou - Head of Research and Evaluation, The Lucy Faithfull Foundation

Dr Sarah Wefers - Practitioner-Researcher, The Lucy Faithfull Foundation

There is currently limited evidence and guidance on best practice in designing and evaluating perpetrator-focused programmes aiming to prevent child sexual abuse material (CSAM) offences. To this end, an online Delphi survey will be deployed internationally to individuals with research and/or professional expertise in designing, delivering, and/or evaluating perpetrator-focused CSAM prevention programmes. Consensus will be sought on a) required components of CSAM prevention programmes, b) outcomes that should be evaluated to capture programme effectiveness, and c) data collection methods safeguarding the anonymity of programme attendants. Consensus statistics will be shared with experts before a new survey round is introduced and at the end of the project. Findings from the Delphi study can be synthesised in guidelines for (re)designing and evaluating self-directed CSAM prevention programmes, to enhance their effectiveness.

3. Lived experiences of women associated with a family member who downloaded Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM).

Dr Elaine Kavanagh - University of Limerick

There is a gap in understanding about the impacts of a loved one’s association with a sexual crime (specific to this study, CSAM offenders) on innocent family members. The scarcity of empirical investigation is surprising in the context that family members are often considered a valuable protective resource for offender desistance and in safeguarding children from abuse. Therefore, this research aimed to explore the lived experiences of families of CSAM offenders in Ireland and the United Kingdom to both identify and target areas for intervention thus enhancing their ability to protect. Using a qualitative approach with fifteen individuals, the present research examined how women, namely, partners, ex-partners, and mothers of CSAM offenders experienced life following the discovery of the crime. Using reflexive thematic analysis, five key themes were interpreted: Shattered Worldview, The Injured Self; Contamination by Association, Navigation through Secondary Stigma, and Fragile Future. The analysis highlighted how innocent family members experienced considerable shame, trauma, and stigma with consequences that reached into every aspect of their lives. These findings provide practical suggestions for increasing support for such families which would enhance their ability to provide support to desisting CSAM offenders, as well as advancing the literature in better understanding complex trauma for secondary victims of sexual crime.

4. Utilising a user-centered design approach to design and develop a technological prevention tool to support effective self-management of individuals at risk of committing CSAM offences

Dr Deanna Davy - Senior Research Fellow - Policing Institute for the Eastern Region, ARU

The volume of Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) available online and the global demand for it has reached unprecedented levels. Increasing numbers of individuals concerned about their online behaviour are contacting therapeutic providers for help and support outside of the criminal justice system. Previous research asking individuals what would help them to stop viewing CSAM suggests that the availability of a technological solution to voluntarily self-manage access to CSAM could be an effective tool. Funded by the EU Commission, Project Protech employed a user—centered design (UCD) approach to the development of the ‘Salus’ prototype, a technological prevention tool to support effective self-management of individuals at risk of committing a first or further CSAM offence(s) by blocking, in real time and at device level, access to CSAM. A USD approach was adopted in order to ensure Salus met the real-life needs of the end users, through a participatory process. To do this we conducted semi-structured interviews with 30 at-risk individuals across three European settings, to explore the specific needs, design features, deployment methods, concerns and barriers for the design, development and implementation of an effective prevention tool at the individual level. Additionally, 5 focus groups were held across four European settings with service providers with extensive experience of dealing with individuals at risk of committing CSAM offences to explore the same issues at the service level. Thematic analysis of interview and focus group data revealed themes relating to three main areas of design; privacy/accessibility, blocking features and interactivity, which were integrated into the design and development of the final Salus prototype, to be piloted across Europe during 2024. The presentation will include a demonstration of the final Salus prototype and a consideration of lessons learnt from the first phase of Project Protech.

D2 - Workshop 90 Minutes

The Success Wheel: How the success wheel is used in HMPPS Accredited Programmes for people convicted of sexual offences as both a therapeutic tool and for evaluation purposes

Olivia Henry - National Specialist Lead – Sexual Offending, Intervention Services HMPPS

Julie Willis - National Specialist Lead – Sexual Offending - Intervention Services HMPPS

The ‘Success Wheel’ is a core concept in HMPPS Accredited Programmes for people convicted of sexual offences. This presentation/workshop will explore how the key criminogenic needs for adult men convicted of a sexual offence are represented in the ‘success wheel’ in a strengths-based, future-focussed way. We will demonstrate how the wheel is incorporated into Horizon and iHorizon, and how it is used by practitioners to encourage self-reflection, self-analysis and to maximise personalisation of the programme content. We also explore how it can inform goal setting and to assist individuals to recognise personal progress.  The development of the success wheel as an evaluation tool will also be explained with reference to the recent clinical outcomes study for Horizon and iHorizon. There will be opportunities for small group discussions and to ask questions.

D3 - Workshop 90 Minutes

Working with complex cases using a trauma informed lens.

Rachel Marcarian- Preceptorship Psychologist, Be Safe/ SOTICS

The Safer Options Trauma Informed Consultation Service is a pilot service set up to trial a new way of supporting professionals who are working with complex cases. This is done using methods similar to those used in the Trauma Recovery Model (Skuse and Matthew, 2018) and the Enhanced Case Management (ECM) model that is currently used in Youth Justice. The SOTICS service applies these models, and related psychological thinking, to cases where the young people do not meet Youth Justice threshold for ECM, but where there are serious concerns about risk of harm to themselves or others through serious youth violence, criminal exploitation and/or sexual exploitation. This workshop will firstly give a brief overview of the service and TRM/ECM, then progress to how we make sense of a young person’s history, development, and functioning, before looking at case studies where there have been concerns of HSB or CSE. This will show how developing a psychological formulation to understand young people who are known to the system, but are perceived as difficult to work with or resistant to change, can be improved by helping the network to consider the impact of trauma on the young person’s development. Working in this way can promote collaboration, compassion, decrease feelings of hopelessness, and promote change. It can also develop skills in professionals, who then may be able to apply these methods to other young people on their caseload. The workshop will end with consideration as to how this way of working could be applied to other populations, such as adults and families, who have experienced trauma which has impacted on behaviour and potentially led to criminalisation or victimisation.

D5 - Workshop 90 Minutes

THIS WORKSHOP HAS BEEN WITHDRAWN

Exploring the impact of Inform Plus, a psychoeducational programme for individuals engaging in online child sexual abuse.

Jamie Stephenson - Circles Coordinator, Circles South West

Amy Gibbs-Grady - Senior practitioner, The Lucy Faithfull Foundation (LFF)

Rhea Joy - Project Worker (Programmes) The Lucy Faithfull Foundation (LFF)

The Inform Plus psychoeducational programme is for men who are under investigation for, or have been arrested, cautioned or convicted of viewing sexual images of children online. It helps men understand their behaviour and put in place strategies to avoid reoffending in the future. The Lucy Faithfull Foundation (LFF) have been collaborating with Circles South West (CSW) on delivering the programme in the south west region since 2020 in order to extend the programme’s reach into new areas and population. The workshop will explore the origins of the programme, the collaboration between CSW and LFF, the importance of building the evaluation of impact into this work and recent research findings. We will take delegates through our Theory Of Change work and the development of an evaluation framework for the programme, to enhance the methodological rigour of evaluation activities. The workshop will report on CSW’s experience of providing Inform Plus programmes for adults convicted of offences relating to indecent images of children who were referred to the programme by the Police. We will explore the process and share the findings of the independent evaluation of this work (published in 2023) that was funded by the NOTA Research Committee and conducted by Research in Practice.

D6 - Workshop 90 mins

Managing risk and trauma after online sexual offending.

Dr Natasha Sabin - Practice improvement advisor, Centre of expertise on child sexual abuse

Across the UK in 2021, there were, on average, over 850 arrests for online sexual offences every month. Sadly, the ease with which child sexual abuse material can be viewed and shared has led to an exponential growth in the production of abuse images and in the number of people accessing them. Data shows that compared with those convicted of other forms of sexual offending, individuals who access child sexual abuse material are more likely to be married and have children. So, hundreds of families will find out a parent or carer has viewed and shared child sexual abuse material each month and child and family professionals need to feel able to support them through this discovery. Unfortunately, children are often there at the time of arrest and witness a distressing series of events, without any ability to make sense of what is happening. Similarly, discovering that a partner, who may be the parent of their child/ren, has viewed and shared child sexual abuse material is a devastating experience. This first visit made to the family home, referred to as ‘The Knock’ is very often the first contact the child/ren and their non-offending parent have had with a police officer or social worker. In collaboration with The Lucy Faithfull Foundation, the Centre of expertise on child sexual abuse created a practical resource to support social workers working with families where a parent has accessed child sexual abuse material: “Managing risk and trauma after online sexual offending: A whole-family safeguarding guide.” During this session one of the authors of this resource will take participants through the detail of the resource to support professionals working with families where a parent has accessed child sexual abuse material with the delicate task of both assessing risk while providing emotional and practical support.

D7 - Symposium 90 mins

Extending the Grievance-Fuelled Violence Paradigm to the Theoretical Understanding of Sexual Violence

Tamsin Higgs - Assistant professor, University of Montreal

Jonathan James - Assistant professor, University of Montreal

Alexandre Gauthier - Doctoral candidate , Université du Québec à Trois Rivières

Grievance-fueled violence (GFV) is a paradigm that has come to include various forms of targeted violence, but has rarely, if ever, included sexual violence within its scope. Yet, at least some, if not most, sexual violence invokes concepts of grievance. This symposium explores some of the ways in which grievance manifests in sexual aggression. In addition, heterogeneity among groups of individuals having engaged in sexually aggressive behavior is a key empirical and clinical concern. As such, there is a focus within the work presented here on subgroups of offenders – some driven by grievance that is evident in their cognitive-behavioral patterns, others being motivated by paraphilic sexual interests, themselves often developed in response to some type of grievance. In the first presentation, the grievances held by involuntary celibates (incels) are explored for their potential relevance to sexual violence risk. The second presentation describes heterogeneity in sexual homicide and discusses potential for seriality. Finally, developmental trajectories leading to sadistic sexual aggression towards adult women that were identified using structural equation modeling in a sample of 206 men will be presented. A central theme to the symposium is the application of such knowledge to the prevention of sexual offending.

D8 - Workshop 90 mins

Mentalisation - working with female offenders and staff who work with them

Anna Motz - Consultant Clinical and Forensic Psychologist and Psychoanalytic Psychotherapist

This workshop outlines the basic principles of mentalisation-based therapy and its origins in attachment theory, psychodynamic therapy, CBT and DBT. It then offers a perspective on how using MBT directly can impact on clients and help them to gain a better understanding of their minds and the link with their behaviour. Using anonymised clinical vignettes and some recordings to illustrate the various modes of mentalising and non-mentalising, participants are also offered a chance to discuss situations from their own workplace. The application of such work with the staff who work with the women will be described, and an opportunity given for workshop participants to consider how MBT informed practice could be used in their settings. The specific issues with which women in the criminal justice system present include high levels of self-harm and emotional dysregulation, both of which require direct work using MBT alongside opportunities for staff reflection and supervision, due to the intense impact of such presentations on them.

D9 - Workshop 90 mins

Revitalising groupwork…theatre-based methods that work and make your life easier

Andy Watson -Artistic Director / CEO - Geese Theatre Company

Have you felt ‘stuck’, uninspired or lacking in confidence in the groupwork you deliver? This workshop is aimed at anyone who wants to remind themself of the importance of creativity and explore theatre-based techniques to substantially improve engagement and make groupwork more accessible and memorable. We will share techniques which Geese practitioners use to minimise barriers to engagement and create a coherent ‘bridge’ into more traditional skills practice roleplay. The workshop will explore: • Using active thematic exercises to build trust and cohesion and minimise reserve and resistance. • Using facilitator-led scenes as a dynamic stimulus to engagement in traditional groupwork themes. • Forum: a compelling way of facilitating skills practice ‘at one step removed’. Please note, delegates will not be expected to ‘perform’ but the workshop is experiential and will involve participation in active exercises and we may ask for a few volunteers to help us to demonstrate techniques.

X