Speaker & Session Information

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Nathan Eisenstadt

Dr Nathan Eisenstadt is a Senior Research Associate in Domestic Violence Perpetrator Group Intervention at the University of Bristol. Nathan was lead qualitative researcher on the evaluation of the Drive Project and is currently working on Reprovide – a Randomised Control Trial of a 23 week group programme for domestically abusive men. He is an honorary research associate at University Exeter for work on bystander intervention Football in Sport and is co-founder and director of Kindling Transformative Interventions which offers bystander training for the prevention of sexual and domestic abuse and the harms associated with multiple forms of inequality.

Keynote Speakers

Jana Špero

Jana Špero is Assistant Minister (Director General) for the prison and probation system at the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Croatia. Since 2019, she is the Vice-President of CEP (Confederation of European Probation). Ms. Špero holds a master’s degree in Law, as well as “Specialist of Criminal Investigation”. As an international consultant for the Council of Europe, she was involved in different activities regarding the development of probation services and has been engaged as an expert in prison/probation projects in Europe on multiple occasions. She was and is the project leader of EU projects for the prison/probation service in Croatia.

Work with offenders of gender-based violence in the Croatian criminal justice system

Offenders who committed gender-based crimes in the Republic of Croatia represent a small group of offenders in total. However, considering the consequences of gender-based crimes for victims and society in general, a lot of effort is taken by criminal justice experts to change their behaviour and to prevent recidivism. In most cases, as part of the sanction, courts order a psychosocial treatment programme. There are specific cognitive-behavioural treatment programmes for offenders both on probation and in prison. Treatment programmes take place as group work or individually. The keynote will provide more information regarding three specific programmes: „Prevention of recidivism and control of impulsive behaviour “, „Aggression Replacement Training“ and „You can do it differently“.

Sandra Jovanović

Sandra Jovanović is a psychologist with ten years’ experience in the field of domestic violence. She has provided psychological support for women and children exposed to violence, ran the first Serbian perpetrator group and founded the National Network for the Work with Perpetrators of Violence Serbia (OPNA). She has been working as an expert consultant in the field of perpetrator work, focusing on the standardization of perpetrator programmes and their set-up in accordance with the Istanbul Convention. Sandra is the author of the WWP EN Expert Paper “Probation and prison based programmes for perpetrators of domestic and sexual violence: a European overview”.

Prison and probation-based perpetrator programmes in Europe – An Overview

In her keynote speech, Sandra will focus on the relevance of prison- and probation-based perpetrator programmes for combating domestic violence. After providing an overview of the variety of perpetrator programmes in Europe, she will look at some issues that are specific to perpetrator programmes in the criminal justice context, and the main challenges she identified within the framework of preparing her expert paper. An important aspect throughout her speech will be the importance of close collaboration between the different agencies involved.

Darren O’Connell

Darren O’Connell is manager of the Drive project in South Wales. He has worked in or been closely aligned to the work of the criminal justice sector for most of his adult working life and began his career working with perpetrators as a prison officer. Later on, as Criminal Justice Officer with Hafal (a National Charity), Darren worked across probation areas, promoting links between criminal justice agencies, mental health services and health and social care services to join the dots needed to work on a successful recovery model for service users. He has supported probation officers by giving them confidence to challenge when service user needs were not being met. Darren strongly believes that people can change with access to the right support, and that community interventions can divert individuals from offending behaviour and keep them out of the criminal justice system.

Multi-agency cooperation for effective change in imprisoned perpetrators of domestic violence Recidivism rates continue to rise all over Europe. If we want to reduce and hopefully avoid recidivism, we must collaborate. From prison to community, we must construct mechanisms and structures for close collaboration for the common goal of stopping reoffending. By working together, we can help the offender construct a firm foundation to build upon, as we approach them as individuals with an inherent value, worthy of support, rather than just as an offender. Aiding them to address their physiological needs provides an important basis for our work on sustained attitudinal and behavioural change. With the Drive project, we have had very good outcomes in Wales, UK. Over the last four years, we have developed systems by building up professional rapport to enable ‘buy in’ with statutory agencies, thereby enhancing access to and collaboration with both the offender and the involved agencies.

Perpetrator work in the context of probation

John Doyle

John Doyle is National Coordinator at the Men’s Development Network’s MEND (men ending domestic abuse) Programme (see www.mensnetwork.ie). With a background in body-oriented psychotherapy, John has been the co-ordinator of MEND since 2006, currently managing the delivery of six CHOICES programmes. He has been on the National Domestic Violence Intervention Programme Committee in Ireland since 2008. He has presented at conferences nationally and in Europe, and was a board member of WWP EN for three years. In December 2013, the MEND Programme was chosen to represent Ireland in the European Crime Prevention Award (ECPA) in Vilnius. MEND’s experience in Ireland regarding the development of a protocol between Domestic Violence Intervention Programmes (DVIP’s) and the Irish Probation Service for men referred by probation to DVIP’s has been very positive and may provide a helpful process and template for other countries.

Carmel Donnelly

Carmel is an Assistant Principal Probation Officer with the Irish Probation Service having worked in the Service for almost 29 years across a range of assignments in both prison and community contexts. As part of her current role, she has lead responsibility for Probation Service policy and practice in the area of domestic violence and support, and for Probation staff to ensure best practice assessment and supervision of domestic violence perpetrators who are referred by the criminal courts. Carmel is a member of the Confederation of European Probation (CEP) Domestic Violence expert working group and has represented the Probation Service on the National Domestic Violence Intervention Programme Steering Committee since 2017. Carmel worked with John Doyle (MEND) and Owen O’Neill (MOVE Ireland) on the development of referral and information exchange protocols with NGO’s who deliver domestic violence programmes in the community.

Andy Blackhurst

Andy is team lead for the Drive project, a multi-facetted perpetrator intervention that works with highest risk/harm perpetrators. As a former police officer and probation offender manager, Andy has helped develop strong working practices and relationships between Drive and the probation and prison services. Andy can offer insights into finding common ground between perpetrator services and statutory services, which help cement strong joint working practices.

Laura Negredo

Laura Negredo is the Deputy Assistant Director-General for Open Regime and Alternative Measures in the Ministry of Interior, Spain. She is currently a member of the Council for Penological Cooperation (PC-CP) Working Group of the Council of Europe. She has been working in the field of alternative measures for more than 10 years; in particular, she has worked on the design and implementation of different treatment programmes for probationers. In 2010 and 2015, she coordinated the working group that developed the treatment programme for gender-based violence perpetrators in Spain, which will be the focus of her participation in the conference. In 2016 and 2017, she was the Resident Twinning Adviser of the Twinning Project “Support for further development and strengthening of the Probation Service in Croatia”.

Perpetrator Work in the Context of Prison

Davide Parma

Davide is a psychotherapist working with perpetrators of domestic violence as well as sex offenders in prison. He is part of the White Dove Association which is an NGO based in Genova, Italy. The White Dove Association is part of the Italian network RELIVE and Davide will give a brief overview on different associations in their network working with sex offenders in prison. He will focus on specific opportunities and challenges arising while working in the prison context such as ensuring victim safety, multi-agency coordination and information flow among different partners, and creating a network to support released sex offenders and direct them to specific programmes outside the prison context.

Isotta Rossoni

Isotta Rossoni holds a BA in International Relations and Russian from Queen Mary University of London and an MSc in Criminology and Criminal Justice from the University of Oxford. Her main interests lie in the field of gender-based violence, crimmigration and human trafficking. Prior to taking up the position of project coordinator with CIPM in 2019, she worked as researcher, project manager and consultant for various Maltese NGOs, and as lecturer at the University of Malta. She is currently coordinating CIPM’s ReSTart Project (2020-2021). The project is funded by Fondo di Beneficenza Intesa San Paolo and focuses on treatment programmes for sex offenders in prison and in the community in various Italian cities.

Paolo Giulini

Paolo Giulini holds a BA in Law and a master’s in Clinical Criminology from the University of Milan, as well as master’s in Psychodiagnosis from the A.R.P. in Milan. Paolo is the President and founder of the Italian Centre for the Promotion of Mediation (CIPM), an Italian NGO focusing on mediation, treatment of sex offenders in prison and in the community, and provision of support for victims. Aside from coordinating CIPM’s activities, from the ‘90s onwards, Paolo has acted as expert criminologist for Lombardia’s Regional Directorate of the Penitentiary Administration. He has published widely on the topics of restorative justice, criminological interventions in prison and in the community primary, secondary and tertiary prevention of violence.

Laura Opris

Laura Opris is a licensed psychologist working in a maximum-security prison in Romania since 2007. As part of her professional experience, she managed group therapy and intervention programmes with high-risk inmates, especially those that committed crimes against other persons, including sex offenders. After 13 years in the field, also as a manager, she tries to analyse if, as a female specialist involved in treatment of men who offended women, gender issues can interfere with others characteristics of a masculinized environment that tends to protect and reinforce aggression.