The mission of the Sexually Inappropriate Behavioral Remediation (SIBR) program is to treat and prevent sexually inappropriate behavior among adolescents and to address its effects on youth, families and the community.
The SIBR program serves children from ages eight to 21. The average age of adolescents in the program is 14 to 18 and predominately male.
Most of the children in this program are from Stark County. Children are placed in the SIBR program because concerns are noted by families, schools or the court. Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health (C&A) also works with adolescents who are court-referred from surrounding counties.
What is considered sexually inappropriate behavior?
Sexually inappropriate behavior falls into three problem behaviors:
- Problem sexual behavior – this includes boundary-crossing behavior such as inappropriate touching and/or inappropriate sexual communication.
- Sexually reactive behavior – this includes sexualized behavior related to traumatic stress resultant from sexual abuse which violates the rights of others or others’ property but does not result in legal sanctions.
- Sexual offending behavior – this includes any sexual behavior which results in legal sanctions. Examples of this include child pornography, gross sexual imposition or rape.
The SIBR program offers three service tracks to address these concerns. The three tracks are Comprehensive Assessment, Healthy Sexuality and Full Treatment.
All youths who are participating in treatment will meet with an assessor for a consultation appointment. From there, the youth will be placed in the correct treatment service. The consultation is to gain a better understanding of the concerns to be addressed.
The comprehensive assessment provides guidance to court officials regarding how to best intervene in order to prevent sexually inappropriate behavior among the youth who have completed the plea process regarding a sex offense charge.
Healthy Sexuality is comprised of two services, which include Healthy Sexuality Groups and Healthy Sexuality Individual therapy.
Healthy Sexuality Group is an eight-week program that is educational in nature and is designed for youths ages 12 to 18 who have demonstrated inappropriate sexual behavior that warranted attention from community members or the court. Some of the participants in the program have been court-ordered but that is not a requirement for program participation. Topics discussed in this program include developing and maintaining healthy relationships, communication skills, boundaries, sexual education, talking consent law and victim impact.
Healthy Sexuality Individual therapy is similar to group curriculum but is delivered on an individual basis. The goal is for youth to understand their behavior and to change their behavior in the future. This does not mean the youth is absolved of responsibility but assisted to understand and accept responsibility for their actions.
The program offers full treatment as well. This is for youths ages 13 to 17, a time of admission, who have been adjudicated for a sexual offense to obtain treatment services tailored individually based on the risk-needs-responsivity principle and as established through the initial assessment. Treatment may include individual therapy, group therapy, case management services, case management group and medical services. Treatment in the full treatment program typically lasts 12 to 18 months.
Adolescents within full treatment may attend Social Skills Group. Social Skills Group is an eight-week interactive learning experience for the youths. This group meets bi-weekly. This group works on social skills and provides context for skills acquisition and rehearsal related to specific social skills such as listening, nonverbal communication and boundaries, expression of emotions, understanding social context, problem-solving and conflict resolution, peer pressure and dating skills.
Family counseling is part of the treatment process as well. In family treatment, a safety plan is created for the family in order to provide adequate supervision and support of the youth.
Dr. Seandra Walker