In August 2013, DODD convened a group to develop a supervision protocol for individuals with developmental disabilities who have been convicted of a sex crime, to better serve these individuals and the communities in which they live. The work group was convened by Deputy Director Zach Haughawout and Associate General Counsel Vicki Jenkins, and comprised of County Board of DD staff and agency providers who have specific expertise in this field. Key tasks for the group included:
- Reviewing current practices used by County Boards and provider agencies to set supervision levels for individuals with developmental disabilities who have been convicted of a sex offense;
- Identifying specific challenges when working with this group of individuals;
- Reviewing currently available resources; and,
- Developing recommendations to assist with determining the level of supervision needed.
Group participants then developed recommendations and tools, which complement the person-centered planning process. The new SSA tools include:
- Develop a protocol for assessments. The protocol should include a description of who is qualified to perform the assessments, the type of information the assessments should obtain, and how to use the information to develop an Individual Service Plan (ISP).
- Develop a guide to help determine appropriate supervision levels. The guide should aid Service and Support Administrators (SSAs) and others on a person’s service team in determining supervision levels by examining supervision across settings. A supervision level worksheet,Service Plan Development and Implementations Checklist for Sex Offenders, is available online.
- Develop a tool to examine the effect of environmental factors on an individual’s treatment and progress. The environmental assessment requires SSAs and the team to examine the impact of a particular dwelling or building, as well as its location, content, and features, on an individual’s treatment or progress.
- Develop a plan for relapse prevention. A new worksheet explains the purpose of a safety plan and the factors the SSAs and the team should consider in preparing a safety plan.
- Develop training regarding these recommendations and tools to ensure they are useful. The work group recognized that direct care staff often do not have the time to attend training, and will work with the Department to develop an online training program.
DODD greatly appreciates the efforts of the Sex Offender Protocol Development work group in devoting their time and expertise to discuss and prepare these recommendations and tools. Additional input and ideas for successfully serving this population are welcomed. Contact Vicki Jenkins at Vicki.Jenkins@dodd.ohio.gov.
More information, tools on the SSA work space: https://sites.google.com/site/ohiododdssa/tools-from-dodd