Australian Institute of Criminology

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Circles of Support and Accountability

74 Leichhardt Street, Griffith ACT
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM 10 March 2011

Dr Kelly Richards

Presentation overview

Circles of Support and Accountability (COSA) are groups of trained volunteers who support child sex offenders to reintegrate into the community after a period of incarceration. COSA are based on the premise that successfully reintegrating child sex offenders into the community will result in decreased recidivism and thereby a reduction in the sexual abuse of children. COSA operate based on twin mottos: ‘no one is dispensable’ and ‘no more victims’. They offer both practical and emotional support to released child sex offenders.

In 2010, Dr Kelly Richards travelled to Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States of America to research COSA as the ACT Government Office for Women Audrey Fagan Churchill Fellow. In this Occasional Seminar, Dr Richards will highlight the existing evidence about the efficacy of COSA, lessons learned from these international jurisdictions, and implications for the Australian criminal justice context.

Dr Kelly Richards

Dr Kelly Richards is a Research Analyst at the Australian Institute of Criminology. She holds a PhD in criminology, and has lectured and researched on crime and justice topics at the University of Western Sydney, Sydney University and University of Technology, Sydney. Dr Richards' research interests include restorative justice and juvenile justice. In 2010, she researched the reintegration of child sex offenders in the United States of America, Canada and the United Kingdom as the ACT Government Office for Women Audrey Fagan Churchill Fellow