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Contact: Jennifer Gatti, 914-740-2100,
Beyond Violence Intervention Targets Long-term Female Inmates

New Rochelle, NY, September 19, 2016–A woman-focused violence prevention program targeted to female inmates serving long prison terms for violent crimes showed significantly positive outcomes. Peer educators from within the prison population–incarcerated women serving life sentences–were trained to facilitate the Beyond Violence program, as described in an article published in the journal Violence and Gender, from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers. The article is available free on the Violence and Gender website until October 21, 2016.

The article "Examination of a Violence Prevention Program for Female Offenders" presents the results from Beyond Violence, an intervention designed to reduce violent behavior among women serving long-term sentences for violent crimes. Studied in two California prisons, the Beyond Violence program was led by incarcerated peer educators who facilitated the curriculum for other women in the general prison population.

Study coauthors Nena Messina, PhD, UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine, Los Angeles, CA, Jeremy Braithwaite and Stacy Calhoun, University of California, Irvine, and Sheryl Kubiak, PhD, School of Social Work, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, report significant reductions in post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, anger and aggression, and symptoms of serious mental illness among women incarcerated an average of 14 years.

"This study looked at a group of women who are far too often forgotten and marginalized in our criminal justice system. Violent female offenders were studied using Beyond Violence, a prevention program for incarcerated female inmates with histories of violence in their backgrounds, both as victims and perpetrators," says Editor-in-Chief Mary Ellen O'Toole, PhD, Forensic Behavioral Consultant and Senior FBI Profiler/Criminal Investigative Analyst (ret.) Director of the Forensic Sciences Program, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA. "Preliminary results suggest that the program, taught by peer inmates, could ultimately result in reduction in intimate partner violence among women incarcerated for long periods of time, as well as a decrease in mental health symptoms associated with their criminal background and incarceration, including anger, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder."

About the Journal

Violence and Gender is the only peer-reviewed journal focusing on the understanding, prediction, and prevention of acts of violence. Through research papers, roundtable discussions, case studies, and other original content, the Journal critically examines biological, genetic, behavioral, psychological, racial, ethnic, and cultural factors as they relate to the gender of perpetrators of violence. Led by Editor-in-Chief Mary Ellen O'Toole, PhD, Forensic Behavioral Consultant and Senior FBI Profiler/Criminal Investigative Analyst (ret.), Violence and Gender explores the difficult issues that are vital to threat assessment and prevention of the epidemic of violence. Violence and Gender is published quarterly online with Open Access options and in print, and is the official journal of The Avielle Foundation. Complete tables of content and a sample issue may be viewed on the Violence and Gender website.

About the Publisher
Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers is a privately held, fully integrated media company known for establishing authoritative peer-reviewed journals in many promising areas of science and biomedical research, including Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking and Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology. Its biotechnology trade magazine, GEN (Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News), was the first in its field and is today the industry's most widely read publication worldwide. A complete list of the firm's 80 journals, books, and newsmagazines is available on Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers website.