Recognizing and Reducing Danger in High Risk Families

CE Hours: 6.0
Instructor: C. Wayne Jones, PhD

Thursday, May 5, 2016, NHS, Colmar PA
Friday, May 6, 2016, Philhaven Conference Center, Mt Gretna, PA
Friday, May 13, 2016, PCS, Lebanon, PA

The children and families served in Pennsylvania’s Family Based Mental Health Services programs often live with a certain level of danger, both within their communities as well as within their own homes. While ESFT is a strength-based model, therapists must remain vigilant about the all-to-common risks for abuse, neglect, domestic violence and suicidality that often exists in these families. This can be a delicate and stressful balancing act for therapists. The primary goal of this workshop is to strengthen therapists’ skills in maintaining this balanced perspective effectively so that children, their caregivers and the team remains safe. Towards this end, red flags for the most common sources of risk are identified and strategies for initiating conversations about destructive or risky behavior in a family are presented. Considerable focus is given to how to construct a meaningful crisis plan and then to how it can be used to anticipate danger, prevent harm and restructure the family. This workshop also addresses what therapists should do when it is time to discharge a child and the child remains at high risk.

As a result of attending this workshop, participants will be able to: 1) identify red flags for child abuse, neglect, and domestic violence, 2) initiate productive conversations with families about the difficult topics of child abuse, neglect and domestic violence, 3) identify red flags for suicidality, 4) initiate and push conversations with children and their caregivers about suicidality, 5) develop meaningful targeted crisis plans and use them effectively to prevent crises, 6) work with CYS productively, and 7) create a discharge plan that alerts other providers of ongoing risk and avoids gaps of service.

Workshop Outline (Modules)

  • 9:00 – 9:30 Introduction to the topic, define danger, address why he workshop is relevant to FB. Provide statistics, talk about the population we treat, impact on therapists when someone dies while under our care. (Wayne Jones, PhD)
  • 9:30 – 10:30 – Presenter Michael Russell, MA – Violence in families, child abuse and domestic abuse. (Michael Russell, MA)
  • 10:30 -10:45 Break
  • 10:45 – 11:30 Neglect. (Michael Russell, MA)
  • 11:30 – 12:00 Working with CYS (Michael Russell, MA)
  • 12:00 – 1:00 Lunch
  • 1:00 – 2:30 Suicidality (Wayne Jones, PhD)
  • 2:30 – 2:45 Break
  • 2:45 – 4:00 Crisis Plans/Discharge Planning