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Publication Date


Document Type



School for Social Work


Female offenders-Rehabilitation, Psychotherapy-Sex differences, Dual diagnosis-Treatment, Women, Gender-responsive, Treatment, Offenders, Utilization focused, Psychiatric hospitals-Outpatient services


This qualitative exploratory study uses a utilization-focused program evaluation to examine a sample of 18 women who successfully completed a gender-responsive treatment program for women offenders who had co-occurring psychiatric and addiction disorders. Semi-structured interviews were conducted to determine whether the gender-responsive programming contributed to subjects' treatment success, quality of life and continued positive functioning. Women attributed their success first to the all-female milieu that allowed them to learn to form healthy relationships with peers and staff. They reported that those relationship skills generalized to other people in their lives. Subjects also tied increases in self-esteem and self-awareness to the ability to develop more positive and satisfying relationships. Trauma treatment and provision of simultaneous addiction and mental health treatment were also seen as very important by these women. The efficacy, strengths and weaknesses of this gender-responsive program are discussed, and implications for clinical practice and further research are reviewed.




vi, 184 p. Dissertation (Ph.D.)--Smith College School for Social Work, Northampton, Mass., 2009. Includes bibliographical references (p. 145-155)