|Child and Adolescent Committee|
|by Amanda Pryor and Arliss Kurtz|
When Shakespeare commented, “What’s in a name? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet”, he meant that a name is irrelevant because the entity would still be the same even with a different name. While this may be true, sometimes a name does not accurately encompass all that an entity is and has to offer. As many of you already know, ATSA recently underwent a name change to become the “Association for the Treatment and Prevention of Sexual Abuse” to reflect the scope of work ATSA members do to make society safer. So too, the members of the Juvenile Practice Committee also decided a name change was needed to reflect the broad age and developmental stages of the youth, from young children to young adults, with whom we work. With that in mind, the Juvenile Practice Committee became the Child and Adolescent Committee to start 2022 with a fresh perspective. While both entities inherently remain the same, the new names are more inclusive and relevant to the work we all do.
The Best Practices sub-committee has been busily reviewing and updating previous fact sheets completed by the formerly named, Juvenile Practice Committee. As noted on the Juvenile Practice page of the ATSA website, these brief fact and informational materials are intended to help inform and guide best practice in working with children and adolescents who have engaged in abusive or problematic sexual behavior. We are pleased to announce that the 2015 document previously titled, “Assessment and Treatment of Adolescents with Intellectual Disabilities Who Exhibit Sexual Problems or Offending Behaviors” has been updated and renamed, “Assessment and Treatment of Adolescents with Intellectual Disabilities Who Exhibit Sexual Problems” by the lead authors, Gerry Blasingame, Kevin Creeden, and Phil Rich.
The Child and Adolescent Committee has committed to using person-first language to name the behavior and not label the person who engaged in it. In keeping with the ATSA Adolescent Guidelines, the Child and Adolescent Committee uses the descriptor “adolescents who have engaged in sexually abusive behavior” in all new documents and those in review. In addition to this being person-first language, it denotes that this is past, rather than current or future behavior, thereby focusing on the potential for positive change.
The In-Reach subcommittee continues to host monthly, virtual “JUMPP” events that are intended to be an interactive experience driven not only by the information our peer consultants share but also by participants’ questions, ideas, experiences, discussion, and case consultations. JUMPP is the acronym for “Juvenile Meeting Place for Practitioners.” Although our full committee’s name has changed, we opted to keep the juvenile in JUMPP for the sake of brand and to avoid the acronym “CAMPP” (although the tag line that we would meet together at “CAMPP” was tempting!) The JUMPP events continue to focus on topics of interest to our participants. Over the next quarter, we plan to become more inclusive of international topics, speakers, participants, and hosting in international time zones. Information about upcoming JUMPP events is sent out by ATSA Public Affairs Coordinator, Aniss Benelmouffok, to the membership and posted to the Juvenile Page on the ATSA website.
In closing, we hope we have piqued your interest to keep up to date on the activities of the newly named, Child and Adolescent Committee!