Book describes harmful effects of labeling and treatment

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In the past 30 years, a vast cottage industry has sprung up to treat and warehouse juvenile sex offenders. Whereas in 1982 the United States had 20 programs to treat such youths, by 2002 that number had skyrocketed to upwards of 1,300 specialized programs, most of them private, for-profit residential centers. What is especially startling about the continuing expansion of this fledgling industry is that rates of serious offending, including sex offending, by juveniles is staying steady or even declining. In The Perversion of Youth, forensic psychologist Frank DiCataldo says this new field may be harming both youth and society, by labeling typical delinquents as sexual monsters and thereby forcing them down a deviant path from which there is little hope of escape. In other words, our very process of labeling and treatment may breathe life into the bogeyman of our cultural imagination.

source: Article 'The "juvenile sex offender": Myth in the making? - Book describes harmful effects of labeling and treatment' by Karen Franklin;; In the News; 31 January 2010