In the European Union, 1 in 3 women will have suffered physical or sexual violence by adolescence while 8 out of 10 men perpetrating this violence are likely to reoffend - unless an intervention reaches them in time. Specialized services and perpetrator programmes play a crucial role in breaking the cycle of violence and reoffending. However, as explained above, many unmet needs lead to ineffective and under-evaluated interventions.
CONSCIOUS is an innovative 20-month project, developing an inter-systemic model for preventing reoffending by perpetrators guilty of sexual abuse and domestic violence. The model will address the lack of evaluation, knowledge and tools that hinder the efficient, inter-systemic and cooperative work needed to significantly reduce reoffending by sexual and domestic perpetrators.
On 10 July, the CONSCIOUS intermediate project conference will be held at the headquarters of Regione Lazio in Rome. The project, co-financed by the Rights, Equality and Citizenship European Programme 2014-2020, aims at creating a replicable model against gender-based violence, both against intimate partners and minors, and to reduce recidivism in perpetrators.
The conference will welcome professionals from the justice system, public and social security, as well as health system who are engaged in developing synergies for cooperation to address the serious topic of recidivism. This cooperation was sanctioned by operational protocols, which represent a fundamental and particularly innovative moment in synergy among the institutions involved in the fight against gender-based violence in the various fields.
The first step of the project was a training for health and social workers in prisons. The second step was setting up a treatment for offenders from the penitentiaries of Cassino (sex offenders) and Frosinone (abusers). 37 prisoners agreed to participate in a specialist treatment aimed at raising awareness and reducing violent acts. Furthermore, ASL Frosinone is working on implementing a treatment for men outside of prison who are a risk of perpetrating gender-based violence.
WWP EN is currently developing a version of the IMPACT outcome measurement toolkit to evaluate the impact of the treatment programmes in prison. Additionally, in a few months, the Guarantor of the rights of prisoners of Regione Lazio shall deliver a study on the social-economic impact of the model and on its replicability in other contexts.
The intermediate conference will include the presentation of intermediate outcomes and next steps. Experts and relevant stakeholders who are committed to fighting gender-based violence directed against intimate partners and minors, will show and discuss their achievements and proposals. The conference is open to the public.
Main target groups for the CONSCIOUS project include
- healthcare staff: increase knowledge and skills according to their role in the intervention
- prison operators and EUPE staff: increase ability to manage perpetrators in prisons
- prosecutors and judges: enable to assess the extent and methods of criminal prosecution necessary
- lawyers: inform about external specialist treatments for offenders
The project intends to address the diverse needs identified in the cooperation on decreasing reoffending between ASL FROSINONE, the Prison of Cassino, and the Frosinone Prosecutor's Office, for the Treatment of Victims of Violence.
These needs include:
- improving expertise in public services
- improving access to specialized public services
- improving synergies between the agencies
- defining working tools and enhanced cooperation methods
- evaluating differences in the effectiveness of treatment
- developing effective tools for listening to and evaluating sex offenders
- engaging citizens to support social reintegration
- developing synergies between punitive and restorative justice programmes
CONSCIOUS will implement a model based on an inter-systemic cooperation network between social-health authorities and services, judicial, criminal execution, public security systems and Civil Society Organizations, capable of intervening with perpetrators in and outside prisons, accompanying them in the path towards their social reintegration
Expected Outcomes of CONSCIOUS include
- reducing participating perpetrators' reoffending by 80%;
- acquiring and/or improving professional skills for the treatment and management of perpetrators by healthcare professionals, prison operators and the External Criminal Execution Office;
- making new treatment services available and accessible both in prison and in the social health sector;
- increasing application of restorative justice measures;
- activating governance and operational synergies, at local, national and European level, for the fight against violence and the prevention of reoffending by the social health, judicial, criminal execution, and public security systems.
The CONSCIOUS project is co-funded by the Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme (2014-2020) of the European Union.
The contents of this website are the sole responsibility of the CONSCIOUS project team and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Commission.