JOINING THE STOPSO NETWORK AS A THERAPIST
If you would like to join our network please fill in the form click here
StopSO prefers therapists who are experienced as therapists, and accredited, or intending to go for accreditation with BACP, UKCP, the National Counselling Society or equivalent. The therapist applying to StopSO does not need to have had any experience of working with this client group (sexual offenders and their families) as training for this is given by StopSO. You will be asked for your name, contact details, address including area and postcode, qualifications, accrediting body, and information about any specialist training or experience you have had in the field of working with sexual offenders, your hourly charge and how you would like clients to contact you. StopSO requires two references, via online forms. One is from your regular supervisor, and the other is from a professional who knows your work as a therapist. We may contact the supervisor and the professional reference to verify or clarify what they stated in the online forms. You will also be asked to upload copies of your certificates (qualifications), a photo (which is for use within StopSO and will not be used on any website), and a copy of your insurance certificate (which should be for at last £2 million).
YOUR SUPERVISORS REFERENCE
StopSO understands that the therapist may be completely new to working with this client group. We are asking the supervisor, based on their experience of the applicant, would they think that this person will be able to work with this client group. We also understand that the supervisor giving the reference may have no experience themselves of working with sex offenders. The new therapist is still welcome to apply to join StopSO, provided they undertake the relevant training.
StopSO provides training for therapists to work with sex offenders. This means that therapists who have never worked with this client group (but are experienced and qualified general therapists) can learn how to work with those at risk of sexual offending or those who have committed an offence, and the families of those who have committed a sexual offence. Therapists wanting to join StopSO are required to undertake a minimum of three days specialist training. This will enable the therapist to work at Level 1, i.e. with those clients who present with a ‘lower level’ of offence. Click here for training courses coming up.
Therapists who have completed the ATSAC sex addiction training will only be required to complete two days specialist training with StopSO. Therapists who have already worked extensively with sex offenders may not need to complete any of the StopSO training, as it may be deemed that they have already gained sufficient experience with this client group. If you think you may fit this category, please fill in the application form, and make this clear. Each therapist’s application is assessed individually.
ADVANCED TRAINING TO WORK WITH SEX OFFENDERS
StopSO provides further training for those who wish to work with those sex offenders who present a more active risk to society, or have a more complex history. At present we are referring to this as Level 2 training. StopSO is in the process of designing a longer course, which would lead to a Certificate in Forensic Psychotherapy – Level 3.
WHEN SHOULD I JOIN STOPSO?
Therapists are encouraged to fill in their application form before completing all their training. This gives time for the therapist to ensure that their supervisor has filled in the online form, and that their professional reference has also been filled in online. They also have time to upload all of their paperwork (qualifications, insurance document and photograph).
THE APPROVAL PROCESS
Each application is approved by at least two members of the board. From the day that all the forms and all the paperwork has been received, this process can take up to three months, On occasion, approval may be given subject to an applicant completing their (three days of) specialist training. Hence it is a good idea for this process to be started, so that on the day the therapist has completed their specialist training, their application is finally approved and the therapist is ready to see their first StopSO client.
HOW REFERRALS WORK
Clients make contact with StopSO, and give us the outline of their issue. We contact the most local, appropriately trained therapist for dealing with this client’s issues, to see if they have availability. At this stage we give some idea of the issue, but no client details to the therapist. We appreciate therapists responding to our requests as quickly as possible. At this point the therapist can agree to see the client, or decline. Once the therapist has let us know they have space and are willing to see the client, we then give them all the info about the client. It is up to the therapist to make contact with the client and arrange therapy. Central to the therapeutic work is managing the dynamic risk of the client.
KEEPING THE THERAPISTS DETAILS PRIVATE
StopSO has found that many therapists prefer not to advertise that they are working with those committing a sexual offence, due to public perception of paedophiles and sex offenders. StopSO helps with this, by being the connecting point between the therapist and the client. StopSO will give the therapist the client’s details, so that the therapist contacts the client to set up the first session. That way the therapist is in control of how much information they give to clients.
The therapist is required to ensure that each client fills in a pre-therapy evaluation form, and another evaluation form post therapy. These are confidential, and are designed to help StopSO gather statistics, which will be used to prove the efficacy of one-to-one therapy in the community for this client group. These statistics will also be used to raise funds.
MEMBERSHIP FEE AND ADMINISTRATION FEE
Once a therapist has had their first referral through StopSO, they pay a £50 annual membership fee (and thereafter will pay a £50 membership fee each year, due on April 1st). From Nov 2016, therapists will pay a one-off £20 administration fee for each client referral.
WHAT DOES THE THERAPIST CHARGE
The therapist will charge their standard fee for therapy. Sometimes therapists are willing to offer a subsidised fee to clients. The price that you negotiate for therapy is between the therapist and the client, and generally StopSO does not get involved with the fee (although we will inform the client of your usual charge, as noted on our application form).
We are regularly applying for funding to subsidise those StopSO clients that are unemployed, low waged, or for some reason cannot afford to pay for their therapy. When StopSO has monies available, if you have a client who needs this, they can apply for this funding via the StopSO office, and use it to pay for their therapy with you. Check with the StopSO office whether there are any funds available for subsiding therapy.
StopSO appreciates the therapist’s usual supervisor may not be skilled or experienced in working with sexual offenders. Where required, StopSO can offer access to specialist clinical supervisors. who can provide one-off advice, or who will work alongside the therapist with a particular client. This is available by telephone or VSee (which is like Skype) for those who do not live near to the supervisor. The therapist will make their payment directly to the supervisor. It is recommended that therapists who are new to working with this client group check if their usual supervisor feels competent to supervise their StopSO work. If they need extra supervision, then the therapist should contact the StopSO office for a suitable recommendation.