Reducing harmful sexual behaviour in adolescents
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Reducing harmful sexual behaviour in adolescents

Joshua Wiggins Nurse specialist – learning disabilities, Surrey and Borders NHS Foundation Trust, Surrey
Sarah Hepburn Primary mental health worker, Surrey and Borders NHS Foundation Trust, Surrey
Rowena Rossiter Honorary researcher, Tizard Centre, University of Kent, Canterbury

Joshua Wiggins and colleagues discuss the work of a therapy group for young people with learning disabilities who have behaved inappropriately

Children and young people with learning disabilities are over-represented among perpetrators and victims of sexual offences. This article describes how a group approach was adopted for a series of complex and risky referrals of adolescents with learning disabilities and harmful sexual behaviours. The approach draws on a version of the Sex Offender Treatment South East Collaborative: Intellectual Disabilities, a treatment protocol for adults with learning disabilities, that has been adapted for teenagers. Successful aspects of the approach include the use of visual resources and multi-sensory activities, which led to improvements in sexual knowledge, and social and emotional skills. Areas that still need development include appropriate assessments for formulation and outcome measurement, and multi-agency commissioning and support for this vulnerable group.

Learning Disability Practice. 16, 8,16-23. doi: 10.7748/ldp2013.10.16.8.16.e1447

Correspondence

joshua.wiggins@sabp.nhs.uk r.rossiter@kent.ac.uk sarah.hepburn@sabp.nhs.uk

Peer review

This article has been subject to double blind peer review

Conflict of interest

None declared

Received: 06 March 2013

Accepted: 14 August 2013