SafeGuarding Vulnerable Individuals

Risk identification for future aberrant behaviour is complex.

It must be understood that there are no possible means of detecting the potential for abuse in all cases. The best we can achieve is to reduce the risk of potential harm by screening out individuals with personality and behavioural traits which have been empirically shown to increase the risk of violent, aggressive, emotionally inadequate or inappropriate sexualised behaviour.

Past research identified and reviewed by PsychCheck indicate that the soundest information regarding risk assessment derives from Structured Professional Judgement (SPJ).

SPJ has been proven to be more accurate than “clinical judgement” (subjective professional assessment based on ‘experience’) and Actuarial (psychometric) assessment alone. SPJ involves incorporating actuarial measures of static (unchangeable) risk with the flexibility of empirically guided clinical judgement (literature rather than pure ‘experience’ based).

We recommended the use of SPJ in the Psychological assessment protocol in PsychCheck.

Psychometric measures are undertaken with candidates, with results reviewed by a Psychologist experienced in risk evaluation. A structured clinical / forensic interview is then undertaken 1:1 by the Psychologist with the candidate leading to a recommendation on suitability.

PsychCheck will only provide an opinion on safe-guarding children where both a psychometric and 1 to 1 interview have been conducted.