MAY 1, 2023 9:15AM
Lawyer, Author, Graham James Victim
Greg Gilhooly, Lawyer, Author
Sexual assault, and child sexual assault in particular, is the murder – or attempted murder – of a soul. It should be understood as such and treated and punished accordingly, with preventative steps taken in the community consistent with this understanding. We fail on both sides of things. My story is that of a seemingly successful teen, a hockey star who had skipped a grade and was at the top of his class, a strong athletic giant who on the outside would have seemed the last person likely to end up in the absolute worst situation imaginable – victimized for several years by a serial child sexual predator. I somehow survived my years with Graham only to escape and find out that as bad as the sexual abuse is, the carnage it leaves behind is even worse. I discovered that I had become my own abuser.
How did this happen? How was I groomed and how did he operate? How was he enabled? How did I respond and what did I do by myself? How does our system deal with people like him? What do we get right and wrong about these crimes? And can our institutions and organizations, including the “justice” system (or, as I prefer, the “legal results” system) and Hockey Canada, do to change to better address these matters? I will try to address all of this in my session
Greg Gilhooly is a graduate of Princeton University and the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. A former corporate lawyer, Greg took time off from his career to finally deal with a deep secret causing ongoing personal crisis; as a teen, Greg had been sexually abused by Graham James, perhaps Canada’s most notorious serial child sexual offender. Greg authored “I Am Nobody”, a book about his experiences. He is a savvy, informed, and passionate media commentator in national and international media, and has testified before the House of Commons and Senate Standing Committees on Justice and Human Rights. Several psychologists have called Gilhooly a “highly functioning victim” who, because of his intellectual abilities and legal training, has the rare ability to provide a detailed and thorough perspective on the emotional and psychological impact of abuse while also addressing the relevant issues and principles at play within our legal system and our society.
MAY 1, 2023 10:30AM
Supporting Youth’s Healthy and Harm-Free Sexual Behaviours
Jenny Coleman, Director – Stop It Now!
A leader in the field of perpetration prevention, Jenny Coleman, LMCH from Stop It Now! will discuss the importance of providing youth with information and tools to make decisions about safe sexual behaviors and relationships. By seeing young people’s sexual behaviors (and thoughts and interests) through a developmental lens, caregiving adults and professionals can better support youth in their understanding of consent, online risks and how to get help and speak up with concerned about their own or a peer’s sexual behaviors. Through presenting findings from the new online resource for youth, WhatsOK.org, this presentation will explore how to deter youth’s harmful behaviors, addressing early boundary violations and identify resources available for youth with concerns about sex and sexuality.
- Promote incorporation of a developmental perspective when addressing youth’s sexual behaviours and concerns.
- Enhance knowledge of the needs of children and adolescents for supports, engagement and resources to address their questions and concerns about sex and sexuality.
Jenny Coleman, LMHC, has been working in child welfare for 30 years; as a clinician, educator and advocate. Her background has been steeped in community and relationship based approaches, grounded on non-violence and trauma-informed models. In 2011, she joined Stop It Now! as their Helpline Director, and now serves as their Director, overseeing a national child sexual abuse prevention program. She presents globally; training individuals and youth serving organizations in primary prevention. She co-chairs the prevention committee for the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers (ATSA), and is a member of the National Coalition to Prevent Child Sexual Abuse, co-chairing the National Plan to Prevent Child Sexual abuse sub-committee. Jenny frequently contributes as a task group member in national discussions on sexual abuse prevention advocacy with organizations such as the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the US Dept. of Justice.
MAY 1, 2023 1:00PM
Talking for Change: Perpetration Prevention in Canada
Ainslie Heasman, Psychologist, CAMH
Talking for Change (TFC) launched at the Centre for Addiction & Mental Health (CAMH) in August 2021 to provide national, anonymous, and confidential support to youth and adults distressed about their sexual interest in children and/or their risk to offend involving a child online or offline. The program operates an all-ages helpline as well as (non-anonymous) assessment and therapy options for adults in certain jurisdictions. This talk will explore the demographics of users of the helpline and how we have reached them, the type of support offered and the evaluation of change over a single, brief and anonymous session.
- Participants will be able to evaluate the ways people at-risk to use child sexual abuse material or offend against a child can be reached to increase help-seeking when needed.
- Participants will be able to demonstrate an understanding of how a single session intervention can impact distress, hopelessness and suicidal ideation, as well as perceived risk to offend.
Dr. Ainslie Heasman is a registered clinical forensic psychologist in Ontario with over 15 years of experience engaging in the assessment and treatment of adults with sexual behaviour problems and/or atypical sexual interests. She received her Ph.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology in 2005. She is employed full-time at the Sexual Behaviours Clinic at the Centre for Addiction & Mental Health (CAMH) in Toronto and maintains a private practice. Dr. Heasman has led the development of Canada’s first national and federally funded child sexual abuse perpetration prevention program, Talking for Change, housed at CAMH. She is a member of the Canadian Psychological Association and the Ontario Psychological Association and is President-Elect of the Association for the Treatment & Prevention of Sexual Abuse (ATSA).
MAY 1, 2023 2:30PM
Using Language to Avoid Landmines: How to Convey Scientific Facts and Cut Through Myths
Kelly Socia, Ph.D., Associate Professor, School of Criminology and Social Justice, University of Massachusetts Lowell
How can we convey important scientific information to folks who are not interested in ‘statistics’ and would rather listen to their ‘gut’? How can we cut through the widespread myths and misperceptions the public has about individuals with sex crime convictions, to promote fairer and more effective policies? This presentation will examine some of the right (and wrong) ways to communicate information about controversial and stigmatizing topics to the public and policymakers, so that the underlying message has the best chance of being listened to and acted upon.
- Understand how the public and policymakers typically respond to people with sex crime convictions and the associated public policies targeting his population
- Understand the ‘dangers’ of using stigmatizing/labeling language in terms of impacting public opinion.
- Identify best practices for discussing stigmatized populations and controversial opinions with the public and policymakers.
- Identify the original source of the ‘frightening and high’ sexual recidivism myth.
Kelly M. Socia, Ph.D., is an associate professor in the School of Criminology and Justice Studies at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, where he is also a fellow for the Center for Public Opinion. His research interests include punitive views, sex offense policies, public opinion, and policymaking.
MAY 2, 2023 9:15AM
‘Doing Shame Without Shaming: From Moral Reactions to Ethical Responses with Sexually Harmful Behaviour’
Alan Jenkins, Director, NADA Consulting
Intervention with sexually harmful behaviour is fraught with dilemmas as we traverse the range of dominant cultural imperatives, injunctions and moral judgments; Why did you?; How could you?; Take responsibility!; Stay away! These cultural demands have tended to colonise both the statutory and the therapeutic, often in ways that appear to legitimise coercive control and compromise children’s development.
In such a highly shaming context, the capacity for young people to find an ethical pathway becomes greatly diminished, leaving them feeling profoundly threatened and humiliated and with highly reactive behaviour. This shaming environment, especially for those who have experienced disadvantage, inadvertently serves to isolate and further deplete an already tenuous sense of connection and belonging, whilst reproducing the very power relations that enable abusive behaviour in the first place.
This workshop will highlight and illustrate a political-affective approach for responding to challenges and recurring problems that arise in work with disconnected and disadvantaged young people who are grappling with the effects of shame, panic and social threat in the aftermath of sexually harmful behaviour.
The workshop will focus on establishing, maintaining and repairing affective attunements and connection with young people, with a particular emphasis on the parallel journeys that we share with our clients and members of their families and communities. A restorative approach that enables social connection and belonging can serve to promote personal accountability and respectful behaviour.
- Develop a parallel and affective restorative journey with young people and their supporters, whilst navigating a highly shaming and threatening social world.
- Explore ethical accountability through a shift from risk-focussed assessment to restorative practice.
- Become attuned to creative possibilities in troubling affects associated with shame and loss.
- Resist shaming and judgemental practices in favour of curiosity, play and experimentation.
Alan Jenkins has worked in a range of multi-undisciplinary teams addressing violence and abusive behaviour for more than 35 years. Rather than tire from this work, he has become increasingly intrigued with possibilities for the discovery of ethical, respectful and accountable ways of relating. The valuing of ethics, fairness and the importance of protest against injustice has led him to stray considerably from the path prescribed in his early training as a psychologist, towards a political analysis of abuse.
MAY 2, 2023 1:00PM
Motivational Interviewing and Difficult Conversations
David Prescott, Director, Safer Society Continuing Education Center
Motivational interviewing (MI) is a client-centered counseling method for exploring how and why a person might change and is based upon a guiding style. It is currently in widespread use around the world. This workshop focuses on key skills and concepts in MI with adolescents. It provides a special focus on using MI in the context of difficult conversations, whether when listening to an angry client or telling others “the hard truth.” Importantly, it also covers changes made to MI during the past decade. Its principles and techniques match those known to produce positive outcomes with people who have abused (e.g., Marshall, 2005) and has been found to be effective with adolescents in variety of settings. MI can be particularly useful for motivating adolescents who are ambivalent about change and ambivalent about engaging in treatment.
- Identify the four components that make up the “MI Spirit”.
- Demonstrate the four motivational interviewing micro-skills.
- Describe the four processes that make up MI.
A mental health practitioner of 38 years, David Prescott is the Director of the Safer Society Continuing Education Center. He is the author and editor of 25 books in the areas of understanding and improving services to at-risk clients. He is best known for his work in the areas of understanding, assessing, and treating sexual violence and trauma. Mr. Prescott is the recipient of the 2014 Distinguished Contribution award from the Association for the Treatment and Prevention of Sexual Abuse (ATSA), the 2018 recipient of the National Adolescent Perpetration Network’s C. Henry Kempe Lifetime Achievement award, and the 2022 recipient of the Fay Honey Knopp Award from the New York State Alliance for the Prevention of Sexual Abuse and New York State ATSA. He also served as ATSA President in 2008-09. Mr. Prescott currently trains and lectures around the world. His published work has been translated into Japanese, Korean, German, French, Polish, and Dutch. He has served on the editorial boards of four scholarly journals.
**NOTE: We welcome an open and free exchange of ideas and perspectives at this year’s Continuum Conference. Please note that Radius does not endorse nor repudiate the views and opinions of any of the guest speakers/presenters. Further, the target audience of the Continuum Conference is: mental health professionals, social workers, probation officers, residential staff, child welfare staff, judiciary, therapists and child and youth workers.
Past Speakers and Workshop Topics
Kevin Creeden, M.A, LMHC
A Developmental Treatment Approach for Understanding and Addressing Sexual Offending in Youth: What, Why, and How
Bente Skau, MSW, Ph.D. and Heather Barbour, B.Sc., RSW
The Pursuit of “Good Sex” in a Pornofied World: Assisting Adolescents in Constructing Positive Sexual Scripts
Nancy Falls, Ed. D and Alice Olsen, M.S.W
Parental Involvement: Treating the Sexually Harming Adolescent in the Context of Their Family
Dr. James R. Worling, Ph.D., C.Psych.
What Does The Research Say? Gaining New Insights For Assessment And Treatment From Recent Investigations
John Briere, Ph.D.
Complex Trauma in Adolescence: Treatment Implications for Young Offenders
Denyse Brushett, BA, MSW, RSW and Stephanie Francois, BSc, MSW, RSW
Expanding Your Tool Kit: Using Expressive Arts to Engage At-Risk Youth Through Creative Interventions
Andrea Joyce, MSW, RSW
Values and Attitudes about Sex… Is this the elephant in the therapy room? Engaging adolescents and their families in such discussions
Stefen Joseph, B.A and Arlene Gonash-Nelson, MSc., BSc.
The role of the youth mental health court worker and the importance of the specialized youth mental health courts
Detective Constable Michele Bond
Self-peer exploitation – Let’s work together
Craig Latham, Ph.D.
Problematic sexual behaviour in children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders
David A. Wolfe, Ph.D.
Impact of media violence on adolescent development and behaviour
Jaqueline Page, PSY.D.
Intervening with adolescents who have engaged in sexually abusive behaviour
David Prescott, LICSW
Good lives and beyond: building better lives with youth
Bente Skau, MSW, PHD, Heather Barbour, B.SC., RSW and Melissa Maltar, MSW. RSW
Sexual descision making: your own code
Online, Offline and Over the Line: Adolescence in a Digital World
Internet Safety 101 for Practitioners
Dr. James R. Worling, Ph.D., C.Psych., Clinical & Forensic Psychologist
Changing Perspectives: Focusing on Protective Factors, Strengths, and Resiliency
Decoding the Language of Sexual Violence: Exploring Rape Culture, Toxic Masculinity, Gender Equality and Building Understanding and Allyship Amongst Men and Boys
Self-care in Working with Sexual Offending Behaviours
Dr. Michael F. Caldwell, Psy.D
Decline in Juvenile Sexual Recidivism Rates: Implications for Assessment and Treatment
Dr. Ryan T. Shields, Ph.D.
Help Wanted: A Public health Approach to the Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse
Sexual Violence Prevention: Accountability and Responsibility in the Post #MeToo Era
Dr. David Ley
Developing Positive Sexuality and Responsible Pornography Use in Adolescents
Karen (B.K.) Chan
Doorways to Dance Through: Engaging Young People on Healthy Sexuality, Consent, Relationships and Intimacy
Heather Barbour, Karen Holladay, Franca Iannotta, Nancy Rumble
My Digital Journey (MDJ)©
Dr. Sandy Jung, Ph.D., R.Psych.
Applying the Risk, Need , and Responsivity (RNR) Principles to Adolescents Who Have Engaged in Sexually Abusive Behaviour
Dr. Nadine Thornhill, Ed.D.
Applying the Risk, Need , and Responsivity (RNR) Principles to Adolescents Who Have Engaged in Sexually Abusive Behaviour
Julie S. Lalonde
“But I Don’t Want to Make it Awkward!” Engaging Youth to End Sexual Violence
Dr. Michael Seto, Ph.D., C.Psych
Prevention of Online Perpetration of Sexually Harmful Behaviour by Young People
Bente Skau and Anthony Odoardi
Dr. Apryl Alexander, Psy.D.
Blending Voices. Strengthening Lives.
Pornography and Sexual Abuse Prevention: Why is Porn an Issue and How Can We Address It?
Dr. Alex Rodrigues, Psy.D.