EUROPEAN NETWORK TO PROMOTE THE EXCHANGE, CAPACITY BUILDING AND TRANSFER OF KNOWLEDGE IN THE AREA OF TREATMENT PROGRAMMES FOR PERPETRATORS OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE AGAINST CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE INSIDE AND OUT OF PRISON.
General framework Violence against children knows no boundaries. Violence cuts across race, class, religion and culture. In every country of the world there are children who continue to fear and experience violence. In particular, an estimated 160 million girls and 75 million boys under 18 experienced forced sexual intercourse or other forms of sexual violence during 2006. In surveys, at least 7 per cent of females (ranging up to 36 per cent) and 3 per cent of males (ranging up to 29 per cent) reported sexual victimization during their childhood. Of women who reported first sex prior to age 15, between 11 and 45 per cent reported that it was forced. Unfortunately, a significant percentage of sexual abuses against children and young people is perpetrated in the private domain. In particular, rape and all other forms of sexual abuse of children appear to be perpetrated mostly by close family members, other relatives or adults residing in or visiting the family – people normally trusted by children and often responsible for their care. Rates of reported sexual violence in all studies appear to be higher for girls than boys. The prevalence of violence against children by parents and other family members has only begun to be acknowledged and documented in recent decades. Domestic sexual violence against children is likely to result from a combination of personal, familial, social, economic and cultural factors, with lifelong consequences for children’s health and development.
Objectives The general objective of the SEX OFFENDERS project is to contribute to the protection of children and young people against all forms of violence and to attain a high level of health protection, well being and social cohesion. The project will contribute to the development of the Community policies related to public health and human rights, as well as actions aimed at protection of children’s rights, and the fight against sexual exploitation. The project's specific objective is to contribute to the prevention of and the fight against sexual abuses occurring in the private domain against children and young people by implementing intervention programmes for perpetrators and by providing support to experts who work with sex offenders. The SEX OFFENDERS project intends to research and explore the bio-medical, psychological and social dynamics leading to sexual abuses against children and young people in a domestic environment. It is important to deepen the clinic and diagnostic side of this issue to organise adequate treatment programmes for sex offenders against children and young people in prison. Intervention programmes for perpetrators are fundamental because the simple repression of the crime it is not sufficient to re-educate the sex offenders. Therefore, the SEX OFFENDERS project intends also to create a multiagency network working with sex offenders also out of prisons, once they have expiated the legal punishment in order to avoid and reduce the risk of reiterated offences.
Project-work plan The project aims to realise the following activities: • Project Coordination: it will include organizational period, kick-off meeting and defining membership of Executive Committee, analyzing a local context, creating press-release and web-site. As well as establishing of networking relationships. • Collection of information and data concerning the profiles of the sex offenders who commit abuses against children and young people and the domestic situation where these abuses are perpetrated. • Mapping of existing research and programming of treatment programmes for sex offenders against children and young people in Europe. • Organisation of a specific treatment programme for sex offenders against children and young people. • Creation of a “MULTIAGENCY NETWORK” involving local actors or social services to treat the sexual offenders not only during the execution of the legal punishment in prison but also once they are out of jail to avoid the risk of reiterated offences. • Organisation of awareness actions and training courses toward experts who work with sex offenders in and out of prisons.