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Enabling environment for sexual offenders in Swedish prisons?

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Author(s): Bengt Hasselrot | Cecilia Fielding

Journal: Sexual Offender Treatment
ISSN 1862-2941

Volume: 5;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 01;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: Psychotherapy | sexual offenders | responsivity | environment

ABSTRACT
It is not only the sexual offender treatment program itself which has an effect upon the rate of recidivism of sexual offenders. The quality of the relationship between prison staff and the prisoners, as well as the relationships between the prisoners themselves, has an impact on recidivism. The environment on the prison wing can be controlled by dominating prisoners who refuse treatment programming, deny their offence and often have an antisocial attitude. Alternatively, it could be dominated by prisoners who work with on themselves in treatment. Prison staffs have an important role in intervening and be a part of creating an enabling environment by being present and relationship orientated, since absent staff tend to give room for destructive attitudes on the prison wing. An investigation of the effect of an enabling environment for sex offenders has been carried out in Sweden. The goal with an enabling environment is to help the offender to live a good life after release and not to reoffend. Every prison holding these prisoners was investigated and factors which promote or counteract an enabling environment were observed. The investigation concludes with six proposals for how to develop a better enabling environment in Swedish prisons.
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