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TC BEHIND THE WALLS. Challenges to Creating a Therapeutic Community in a Prison Setting. 9 Essential Elements of the Therapeutic Community . Use of Participant Roles Use of Membership Feedback Use of Members as role models Collective Formats for individual change (DeLeon, 1995).

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TC BEHIND THE WALLS

Challenges to Creating a Therapeutic Community in a Prison Setting


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9 Essential Elementsof the Therapeutic Community

  • Use of Participant Roles

  • Use of Membership Feedback

  • Use of Members as role models

  • Collective Formats for individual change

    (DeLeon, 1995)


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9 Essential Elementsof the Therapeutic Community

  • Shared norms, values and standards

  • Structure and systems

  • Open Communication

  • Use of Relationships

  • Use of Language

    (DeLeon,1995)


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ANTI-SOCIAL

Shot-caller

Gangbanger

Hustler

PRO-SOCIAL

Resident Activity Coordinator

Tutor

Peer Mentor

PARTICIPANT ROLES


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MEMBERSHIP FEEDBACK

  • Groups

  • Verbal Reprimands

  • Encounters

    Cross-training with custody staff to increase understanding of appropriate confrontation.


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MEMBERSHIP AS ROLE MODELS

Positive role modeling reinforced through:

  • Increased responsibility

  • Increased status

  • Increased privileges

    Providers must harness negative modeling and peer pressure and redirect.


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POSITIVE REINFORCERS

  • Increased recreational time

  • Paid inmate worker positions

  • Increased range of programmatic choices


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COLLECTIVE FORMATS

Learning occurs in all collective gathering.

  • Ceremonies

    • Holiday meals

    • Multicultural celebrations

  • Special events

    • Tournaments

    • Job fairs

  • Groups


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TC Sanctions

Pull-ups

1-to-1 Counseling

Verbal reprimand

Learning Experience

Contract

Banishment

Correctional Sanctions

Verbal Counseling

Custodial Counseling note to inmate file

Disciplinary report with loss of privileges

Removal from program with loss of time earning status

SHARED NORMS AND VALUES


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Reinforcing positive values

  • Opportunities for community services

  • House beautification and community pride


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STRUCTURE & SYSTEMS

Graduated incentives for increased responsibility

  • Approved pay for higher level participant workers

  • Institutional inmate worker positions with higher pay or status

  • Work equipment that symbolizes status (e.g.: clipboards)

  • Status housing or bunks

  • Modified identification cards for senior role models allowing for increased movement for outreach purposes;

  • Resident of the month plaques

  • Logo items (t-shirts, cups, etc.)

  • Structure boards


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OPEN COMMUNICATIONS

  • Build trust with participants

  • Break the “convict code of silence”

  • Make sure TC staff and participants understand the limits of confidentiality

  • Dialogue with custody staff regarding that which must be reported and that which does not.

  • Build trust with custody staff


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RELATIONSHIPS

  • TC staff must model healthy relationships amongst themselves

  • TC staff must model open relationships with custody staff

  • TC staff must be limit-setters with participants

  • TC staff must reflect genuine care, compassion, and warmth for participants

  • Provide a model of healthy, non-exploitative, non-violent, and non-sexual relationships

    This challenges the bounds of “overfamiliarity” within a correctional setting


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CROSS-TRAINING

CROSS-TRAINING

CROSS-TRAINING


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OBSTACLES TO CREATING A REWARDS SYTEMS IN PRISON TC’S

  • Rewards challenge deeply entrenched notions of the punitive function of prison

  • Rewards may pose security concerns

  • Inmates in non-SAP facilities may file grievances based on unequal treatment

  • Rewards may pose logistical challenges


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BENEFITS TO IMPLEMENTING ESSENTIAL TC ELEMENTS

A healthy in-custody therapeutic community that incorporates all of the essential elements of the TC:

  • Improves prison management

  • Reduces recidivism


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THANK YOU

WHAT ARE YOUR QUESTIONS?


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