Bridging the Gaps between Research and Prevention



    MAY 7 & 8, 2018 TORONTO



The Continuum of Services for Adolescents
Who Have Sexually Offended

"Bridging the Gaps between Research and Prevention"

May - , 2018 - Novotel Hotel, North York


Founded in 1994, the Continuum of Services for Adolescents Who Have Sexually Offended (The Continuum) grew out of a small group of clinicians in Toronto who met to discuss and coordinate their work with youth who sexually offend. This group shared a commitment to providing effective treatment to these youth in order to reduce recidivism and thereby reduce further victimization. With the move to a more formal network came the inclusion of a much wider range of professional groups and service providers, including probation, residential and day treatment programs, children’s mental health centres, child welfare agencies, the police, the judiciary, lawyers and Crown Attorneys. As the name suggests, the intention was to support and coordinate the work of this ‘continuum’ of services and people who become involved with these youth, from the first point of contact to their transitioning from treatment.

Since 1994, The Continuum has endeavoured to provide leadership in this field. Our annual conference has provided up-to-date training on a variety of topics related to the assessment and treatment of youth who have sexually offended, and other clinically relevant topics such as the Youth Criminal Justice Act and adolescent brain development. Through a grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation in the late 1990’s, The Continuum initiated a research project designed to measure the efficacy of comprehensive treatment and to inform the development of best practice standards. This project later became the foundation for a long-term national research project.

For several years, beginning in the late 1990’s, The Continuum’s Steering Committee created a Legal Issue Sub-Committee to identify legislative and procedural barriers in the youth justice, child welfare and treatment systems. Finally, The Continuum has, throughout its existence, been a persistent conduit for advocacy for the treatment needs of this population and the resource needs of those who share our commitment to reducing sexual violence. Still true to its origins, The Continuum continues to be a coalition of agencies and individuals committed to reducing sexual offence recidivism and protecting the community. We still receive no outside funding, so we depend on our members to carry out and support the work of the Continuum. Our strength and dynamism comes from the individuals and organizations that make up The Continuum.

We invite you to get involved and to stay in touch.


Sign In and Conference Envelope Pick-Up

Opening Remarks

Dr. Michael F. Caldwell

Refreshment Break

Presentation Continues

Lunch On Your Own

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Refreshment Break

Presentation Continues

Dr. Ryan T. Shields, Ph.D.

Refreshment Break

Presentation Continues

In-House Lunch (Included in Registration Fee)

Jim Shea Award Presentation

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Refreshment Break

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Conference Will Be Held At

Novotel Hotel

3 Park Home Avenue
North York (Toronto)
Ontario M2N 6L3
(416) 733-2929

Visit Hotel Novotel Website

Novotel individual guest reservation:
  • Call hotel reservation directly at (416) 733 2929 extension 1 or 2 and mention group name "Continuum Conference" or Block ID # "892358",
    to avail the special group rate.
  • By Email: groups@novotelnorthyork.com
  • Reserve before April 9, 2018
  • Group rates are not available for reservations made online, or through the central reservations line (1-800 number).

Directions From Pearson Airport, follow Hwy 401 E., exit for Yonge Street N., follow 6 traffic lights then turn left onto Park Home Ave. The hotel is on the left. From E. Ontario, Ottawa or Quebec, follow Hwy 401 to Toronto W., exit for Yonge Street to Park Home Ave. From Niagara Falls, Buffalo, Rochester and the US, follow the QEW to Toronto East to Hwy 427 and head N. to Hwy 401 east, follow the same directions as from the airport to this top choice among hotels in North York.

Transit North York Centre Station

Parking Event Parking Rate $8 (passes will be validated by the front desk)




May 7, 2018 9:10 am

Michael F. Caldwell, Psy.D. is a Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Wisconsin – Madison and a Senior Staff Psychologist at the Mendota Juvenile Treatment Center. He currently serves as Past President of the Wisconsin Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers. Dr. Caldwell has provided clinical treatment and risk assessment services for violent adolescent offenders including adolescent sexual offenders, and he has conducted research into risk assessment methods and the effectiveness of treatment interventions with adolescent offenders with callous/unemotional traits. He is currently a Co-Principle Investigator on NIMH grants investigating the neuroscience of aggression and changes in the adolescent brain associated with effective treatment. He is also a consultant to the Urban Institute and the MIND Research Network at the University of New Mexico. He has served as a consultant to the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Juvenile Justice, the National Academy of Sciences Sackler International Scientific Forum on Neuroscience and the Law, Sandra Day O’Connor School of Law at Arizona State University, and the Boyd School of Law at the University of Nevada – Las Vegas, among many others. He has published over 40 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters related to risk assessment and treatment of violent adolescent delinquents and adolescent sexual offenders.


  • The types of violence that have declined substantially in recent decades
  • The possible explanations for the decline in sexual violence committed by adolescents
  • The implications of low base rates on risk assessment and treatment plan formulation
  • The policy implications of low sexual recidivism rates among adolescents
  • Treatment goals and approaches based on protective factors, strengths, and resiliency
  • Why we should stop doing adolescent sexual recidivism risk assessment
  • What to do instead of sexual recidivism risk assessments


Dr. Ryan T. Shields, Ph.D.

May 8, 2018 9:10 am

Ryan T. Shields, Ph.D. is an assistant professor in the School of Criminology and Justice Studies at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. He is the former Associate Director of the Moore Center for the Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

His scholarship centers on the intersection of criminology, criminal justice, and public health. His recent work has examined policies aimed at youth who have sexually offended, such as juvenile transfer to adult court and sex offender registration and notification policies. He is also currently leading a project to develop an online prevention intervention for adolescents with a sexual interest in children.


  • To understand evidence base supporting child sexual abuse prevention efforts.
  • To identify the needs of adolescents with a sexual interest in prepubescent children.
  • To examine challenges to help-seeking behavior that adolescents with a sexual attraction to prepubescent children experience.
  • To explore identified areas of intervention and consider the messaging and content needed to address this population’s needs.

Past Speakers and Workshop Topics:


Kevin Creeden, M.A, LMHC
A Developmental Treatment Approach for Understanding and Addressing Sexual Offending in Youth: What, Why, and How

Bente Skau, MSW, Ph.D. and Heather Barbour, B.Sc., RSW 
The Pursuit of “Good Sex” in a Pornofied World: Assisting Adolescents in Constructing Positive Sexual Scripts

Nancy Falls, Ed. D and Alice Olsen, M.S.W 
Parental Involvement: Treating the Sexually Harming Adolescent in the Context of Their Family

Dr. James R. Worling, Ph.D., C.Psych.
What Does The Research Say? Gaining New Insights For Assessment And Treatment From Recent Investigations


John Briere, Ph.D.
Complex Trauma in Adolescence: Treatment Implications for Young Offenders

Denyse Brushett, BA, MSW, RSW and Stephanie Francois, BSc, MSW, RSW

Shelley Kavanagh
Expanding Your Tool Kit: Using Expressive Arts to Engage At-Risk Youth Through Creative Interventions

Andrea Joyce, MSW, RSW
Values and Attitudes about Sex… Is this the elephant in the therapy room? Engaging adolescents and their families in such discussions.


Stefen Joseph, B.A and Arlene Gonash-Nelson, MSc., BSc.
The role of the youth mental health court worker and the importance of the specialized youth mental health courts.
Detective Constable Michele Bond
Self-peer exploitation – Let’s work together

Craig Latham, Ph.D.
Problematic sexual behaviour in children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders.

David A. Wolfe, Ph.D.
Impact of media violence on adolescent development and behaviour.


Jaqueline Page, PSY.D.
Intervening with adolescents who have engaged in sexually abusive behaviour.
David Prescott, LICSW
Good lives and beyond: building better lives with youth.

Bente Skau, MSW, PHD, Heather Barbour, B.SC., RSW and Melissa Maltar, MSW. RSW
Sexual descision making: your own code.


David Delmonico
Online, Offline and Over the Line: Adolescence in a Digital World.
Jo Langford
Internet Safety 101 for Practitioners.


Dr. James R. Worling, Ph.D., C.Psych., Clinical & Forensic Psychologist
Changing Perspectives: Focusing on Protective Factors, Strengths, and Resiliency

Kevin Vowles
Decoding the Language of Sexual Violence: Exploring Rape Culture, Toxic Masculinity, Gender Equality and Building Understanding and Allyship Amongst Men and Boys

Geraldine Crisci
Self-care in Working with Sexual Offending Behaviours



The Jim Shea Memorial Award for Outstanding Service

Jim Shea spent much of his social work career developing and delivering services for youth who sexually offend and for those affected by them. He was the founding Director of the Peel Collaborative Child and Adolescent Sexual Abuse Treatment Program, where he worked until his death in the summer of 2005. Jim was widely recognized for having cultivated and nurtured a team of professionals who provided outstanding service to Peel  Region, and have gone on to populate many of the agencies and organization engaged in this work throughout Southern Ontario.

This award is made once a year to someone who has made a significant contribution to the development and provision of services to youth who have sexually offended. Recipients are those who, like Jim, have contributed to our development and collaboration as a service community, have encouraged and supported workers, especially those just entering into this field of practice, and who have engaged in practice that is respectful, collaborative and effective.

Previous Award Recipients

Each year the Continuum Committee invites you to nominate someone who meets the following criteria:

Nominees should have been involved in working for significant period of time with youth who sexually offend, their families and those affected by their offending behaviour.

Their practice should have had an impact on the youth and/or service providers in Ontario.

Their contribution to this field of practice, in whichever role they occupy, should be remarkable for its longevity, impact, novelty or scope.

They have practiced in a way that has fostered appropriate attention to the issues and an appropriate regard for the youth who we collectively serve.

They have yet to receive recognition for their efforts that is clearly deserved.


Get in touch

Please fill out the inquiry form and we’ll get back to you soon

Phone: 416.222.1153 ext. 129

Nicole Hart, Griffin Centre