Right now they are mostly about Treatment Costs.
Sexual abuse is a public health issue that impacts everyone – individuals, communities, institutions, and society as a whole. The prevention of sexual abuse requires a well-planned, comprehensive, interdisciplinary and evidence based approach. Sexual offense specific strategies and policies should prevent sexual abuse and support the rehabilitation of perpetrators as this will promote long-term community safety.
ATSA is comprised of multi-disciplinary professionals such as psychologists, therapists, researchers, social workers, police officers, parole/probation officers, victim advocates, and lawyers. The ATSA Public Policy Committee’s focus is to provide information and guidance on best practice standards related to the management and treatment of individuals who have sexually abused or are at risk to abuse. This is accomplished by identifying, monitoring, and responding to trends, issues, and concerns related to the management, treatment, laws, and policies for individuals who have sexually abused or are at risk to abuse. Given the devastating impact of sexual abuse, strategies must be informed by research, evaluation, and best practices to strengthen public safety.
Interested in learning more? The information below describes evidence based strategies that lead to the effective assessment, treatment and management of individuals who have sexually abused or are at risk to abuse. The ATSA Public Policy Committee works diligently to stay current on policy changes and update this site accordingly. However, policy changes often occur rapidly, so there can be a lag time for updates. If you think a document is out of date, please contact us.
To access information, click on the category of interest for links to downloadable position papers, fact sheets, and other information related to each topic area. ..Continued.. by ATSA
History: States w/CC are omitted here. This follows:
Typically, these laws provide a legal mechanism for the confinement of a limited number of ADULT sexual offenders in a secure treatment after incarceration when a court determines they are likely to engage in future acts of sexual violence.
Texas has an exclusively community-based commitment program and Pennsylvania has a civil commitment program only for juvenile offenders aging out of the delinquency system.
To meet the criteria for commitment, the offender must suffer from a mental abnormality or personality disorder predisposing the offender to commit future acts of sexual violence.
The use of civil commitment for sexual offenders has generated considerable debate in legal and clinical professions, and it continues to be debated even among professionals who work with and conduct research on sexual offenders.
Proponents argue that such provisions offer an important community protection safeguard by incapacitating a high risk subgroup off sex offenders. In addition, civil commitment can provide opportunities for these individuals to receive treatment interventions that may reduce their potential to recidiviate upon release to the community, particularly offenders for whom specialized treatment was not available in the prison setting.
Objections to civil commitment are generally three fold.
First, the legal mechanism by which the offenders are detained when civill committed depends on clinical criteria primarily created or defined by legislative bodies rather than by the scientific or mental health communities. ..Continued.. by ATSA
A new Policy Statement by ATSA
ATSA supports evidence based public policy and practice.. Research consistently shows that residence restrictions do not reduce sexual reoffending or increase community safety.
In fact, these laws often create more problems than they solve, including homelessness, transience, and clustering of disproportionate numbers of offenders in areas outside of the restricted zones.
Housing instability can exacerbate risk factors for reoffending. Therefore, in the absence of evidence that these laws accomplish the goals of child protection, ATSA does not support the use of residence restrictions as a feasible strategy for sex offender management. ..Continued.. by ATSA
Resolution #13 - Neighborhood Exclusion of Predatory Sex Offenders
- Whereas the release to the community of predatory sex offenders may create in the mind of the public fear and trepidation;
- And, whereas the responsibility of Correctional Administrators is to protect the safety of the public and insure the fair and humane treatment of offenders committed to our custody, and
- Whereas, often community fear of predatory sex offenders may lead to measures intended to protect the public by limiting the places where predatory sex offenders may live and where they may be, and
- Whereas, all sex offenders under the supervision of the criminal justice system should be managed according to their specific risk issues and based on the body of knowledge that has been developed regarding the effective treatment and supervision of sex offenders;
- Whereas, upon release the proper supervision and surveillance of predatory sex offenders by a professional community corrections agency is the best assurance of community safety, and
- Whereas, there is no evidence to support the efficacy of broadly applied residential restrictions on sex offenders, and
- Whereas statutory prohibitions on where predatory sex offenders may be and where they may reside may cause them to become lost to the supervision and surveillance of responsible authorities, and
- Whereas it is contrary to good public safety policy to create sex offender ghettoes, and
- Whereas it is contrary to good public safety policy to create disincentives for predatory sex offenders to cooperate with responsible community corrections agencies,
Be it resolved that the Association of State Correctional Administrators supports legislation which is reasonably related to the ability of community corrections agencies to afford proper supervision and oversight to predatory sex offenders and which is practical, enforceable and likely to result in the protection from sexual predators of children and others in the community.
Adopted by the Association of State Correctional Administrators – May 25, 2007. ..Source..