In every forensic treatment setting, the forensic psychology professional must be aware of the role that suicide prevention plays in the larger system inside and outside forensic institutions. Both incarcerated offenders and individuals awaiting sentencing pose potential suicide risks. In addition, offenders on probation or parole may exhibit an increased risk of self-harm. Often, suicide risk is increased in the forensic setting because of factors ranging from shame and guilt to mental illness or fear. Suicide prevention is one of the most critical functions that a forensic treatment practitioner has in any forensic treatment setting.
Even though staff members in jails and prisons work hard at reducing suicides, people still choose to end their lives when they are in forensic treatment settings. Although some of these individuals suffer from pre-existing mental health conditions, many do not. Forensic treatment practitioners should be leaders and advocates for suicide prevention efforts in their forensic settings. In addition to basic policy knowledge, the savvy forensic psychology professional needs to be aware of local, state, and national efforts to reduce the instances of attempted and completed suicides in forensic treatment settings.
To prepare for this Discussion:
· Think about the components of suicide prevention and intervention approaches and programs. Consider the efficacy of these approaches and programs. Reflect on which of these components are important in forensic treatment settings.
· Select two components of suicide prevention and intervention approaches and programs that you think are important in forensic treatment settings, and consider why.
With these thoughts in mind:
By Day 3
Post a brief description of two components of suicide prevention and intervention approaches and programs that you think are important in forensic treatment settings, and explain why you think they are important.
Choi, N. G., DiNitto, D. M., & Marti, C. N. (2019). Suicide decedents in correctional settings: Mental health treatment for suicidal ideation, plans, and/or attempts. Journal of Correctional Health Care, 25(1), 70-83.
Mulay, A. L., Vayshenker, B., West, M. L., & Kelly, E. (2016). Crisis intervention training and implicit stigma toward mental illness: Reducing bias among criminal justice personnel. International Journal of Forensic Mental Health, 15(4), 369-381.
Vandevelde, S., Vander Laenen, F., Van Damme, L., Vanderplasschen, W., Audenaert, K., Broekaert, E., & Vander Beken, T. (2017). Dilemmas in applying strengths-based approaches in working with offenders with mental illness: A critical multidisciplinary review. Aggression and violent behavior, 32, 71-79.