Persons with developmental disability exposed to interpersonal violence and crime: approaches for intervention

Author(s)Focht-New, Ginny, Barol, Beth, Clements, Paul T, Milliken, Tammi F
Title Persons with developmental disability exposed to interpersonal violence and crime: approaches for intervention
Source Perspectives in Psychiatric Care. Philadelphia, Apr 2008. Vol. 44, Iss. 2; pg. 89, 10 pgs
Date 2008
Document type Journal article
Summary This article discusses the challenges in supporting victims of crime with a developmental disability (DD). Research has shown that persons with DD have a much higher risk of becoming a crime victim than persons without disabilities. Persons with DD may have a limited range of coping skills and be more vulnerable to stress-related thoughts and feelings. Effective intervention strategies need to revolve around enhancing their abilities to control instinctual impulses while in their home and work environments. A case scenario and exploration of key strategies and treatment approaches is included to provide guidance for intervention. The importance of supporting the caregivers is emphasised and the use of a biographical timeline as an assessment tool and intervention support, is explained. The authors suggest that victims with DD may benefit from traditional therapeutic approaches but the supportive, communicative and psychotherapeutic interventions need to be adjusted to the appropriate level for communication and understanding.
Keywords Disability; trauma; developmental disability; psychotherapeutic interventions
Topic Psychological effects and treatment; Disability