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Disability Forensic Assessment


... sexual offences against children n=14, abduction n=1, Serious Assault n=1. ... History Manslaughter, Arson, Abduction, Aggravated Burglary with Offensive ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Disability Forensic Assessment

Disability Forensic Assessment Treatment
  • Huge Land mass almost as great as that of the
    continental USA, 32 times greater than that of
    the United Kingdom.
  • Population 21.5 Million.
  • 8 States and Territories.
  • Westminster System of Government 3 levels -
    Commonwealth, State, Local.
  • Victoria
  • Second Smallest state (in mass).
  • 227 600 km2 (about the same area as England,
    Wales and Scotland),
  • Population 5.3 million.
  • About 36 per cent of Victoria is covered by

  • 210 Deaths
  • Over 2000 homes destroyed
  • 822 emergency presentations to Hospitals

Department of Human Services.
  • Disability Forensic Assessment
    Treatment Service (DFATS) is a specialist service
    within Disability Services Division of DHS,
  • Largest Victorian Government Department,
  • Responsible for Health, Mental Health, Senior
    Victorians, Community Services, Housing and
  • Funds organisations such as hospitals, aged care
    facilities, ambulance services, and community
    service agencies,
  • Operates a range of residential case management
    services for people with ID.

Population Demographics Intellectual Disability
  • Clients registered on the DHS, Disability
    Services, database (2009)
  • Total 41,889
  • Male 24,866
  • Female 17,023
  • Victoria Prison population (2009)
  • Total number of prisoners 4,223
  • Male 3985
  • Female 238
  • Intellectual Disability 112
  • Female ID 2

Disability Forensic Assessment Treatment
Service (DFATS)
  • Established in 1987 in response to challenges
    facing the service system,
  • Target group
  • people with an intellectual disability,
  • involved in the criminal justice system
  • have demonstrated dangerous, anti-social

DFATS Service Philosophy
  • Offenders with an intellectually disability have
    the same right to treatment as their non-disabled
  • They have the ability to learn, understand
    obtain internal control over their offending
  • Treatment is to assist the client to obtain the
    least restrictive lifestyle whilst reducing risk
    to the community,
  • Consistent application of treatment across
    environments provides the best opportunity for
    real change,
  • Treatment decision making by a
    multidisciplinary team ensures that a whole of
    life approach is taken,
  • Reducing the risk of reoffending is enhanced by
    increasing community agency knowledge
    awareness of this group.

DFATS - Programs
  • Three tiers of programs
  • Intensive Residential Treatment Program (IRTP),
  • Community Program (consisting of individual and
    group session to people with a disability
    residing in the community)
  • Prison based programs,
  • Consultancy Program (court assessments, aadvice
    and training).

  • A highly structured, supervised residential
  • Currently four stages each involving different
    levels of security, supervision, treatment and
    community access (max.5 clients in each stage),
  • A legislatively mandated entrance process to
  • A legislatively mandated treatment planning
    process reviewed by the OSP VCAT.
  • Programs delivered by Program Support Team
    (clinical and case management) together with
    Residential Support Team.

IRTP Eligibility
  • Clients need be eligible for services under
    Disability Act (2006) most are borderline to
    moderate ID. (Clients need to demonstrate a
    capacity to comprehend Cognitive Behavioural
    Therapy (CBT) treatment concepts)
  • 18 years or older
  • They must be convicted of a serious offence as
    defined by the Sentencing Act 1991 which
  • Murder/ attempted murder / Manslaughter
  • serious assault
  • arson
  • Serious sexual offences against adults or minors

IRTP Eligibility
  • Must be subject to one of the following orders
  • A Residential Treatment Order (Sentencing Act
  • A Parole Order (Corrections Act 1991)
  • A Custodial Supervision Order (Crimes Mental
    Impairment and Unfitness to be Tried Act 1997)
  • Prison transfer
  • An Extended Supervision Order (Serious Sex
    Offenders Monitoring Act 2005)

IRTP Program Details A range of offence-specific
and related individual and group work, utilising
a cognitive behavioural approach based on a
positive sanctioning model. A life skills and
social skills component designed to increase
clients independence, capacity to engage in
treatment and preparation for community living.
IRTP Program Numbers
  • 16 Clients (Max 20 clients)
  • Major Offence Types Rape / sexual offences
    against children n14, abduction n1, Serious
    Assault n1.
  • Criminal History Manslaughter, Arson,
    Abduction, Aggravated Burglary with Offensive
    Weapon, Intentionally Cause Serious Injury,
    Recklessly Cause Serious Injury.
  • Age Range 21 - 53

Community Prison Programs
  • Delivered by the Program Support Team (clinical
    and case management) for those residing in the
    community, in group homes, prison or youth
    justice services. It includes
  • direct specialist services including counselling
    and group work
  • community-based groups and individual therapy
    sessions at DFATS premises and in the community
  • prison based services at Port Phillip and Loddon
  • specialised support services to young forensic
    disability clients in the Youth Custodial System
  • Community Dual Disability Clinic providing
    services to people with an intellectual
    disability and mental illness.

Community Prison Programs Client Profile
  • 32 Clients (Individual Group)
  • 39 Clients (DDC)
  • (aspergers, paranoiac, suicide self harm,
    depression, ADHD)
  • 112 Registered Clients in Prison system.
  • Male 110, Female 2,
  • Remand 34, Sentenced 78,

Corrections Victoria Disability Framework
  • Establishment of a pathway for ID offenders as
    they move through their imprisonment
  • Consists of the Joint Treatment Program (JTP) in
    PPP step down independent living units in
    Loddon Prison.
  • JTP based upon a therapeutic community.
  • Staff from CV, DFATS PPP (GSL) provide a range
    of programs.

Joint Treatment Program
  • 33 Prisoners in unit
  • Cognitive functioning- Borderline to moderate ID,
  • Co morbidity - ID mental health, ID
    substance abuse,
  • Age range - 21 to 60 years,
  • Offence types Drug related, Sexual offences,
    Violent offences, Property offences,
  • Length of sentence 12 months to 20 years.

Joint Treatment Program Intervention Focus
  • 6 Psychologist
  • 1 Social Worker
  • 1 Dual Disability Clinician (DDSO 3a)
  • 4 Psycho Educational Trainers
  • 4 Case Management Team
  • 3 VPS (Prison / YJ liaison)
  • 60 DDSO (1-4) Residential Workers

DFATS Staffing
Difficulties Dilemmas
  • Consistent application of a treatment approach in
    the wider system.
  • Public perception of intellectual disability.
  • Limited life opportunities for the clients.
  • Modification of current treatment approaches.
  • Treatment versus security / risk.
  • Working within a dramatically changing social
    service system.
  • Resource allocation.
  • Research comparisons outcomes.
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