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Moore Center for the Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse

Symposium Lunch and Learn and Child Maltreatment Poster Session

Ryan Shields

The Lunch and Learn features a luncheon and talk by Dr. Ryan Shields, who will present the latest findings in our Help Wanted  study and take questions from the audience. The $7 lunch includes a sandwich, pasta salad, fruit and a drink. The luncheon will be held in Feinstone Hall, E2030 (one floor up from the symposium). Space is limited, so please register early. In the event you need to cancel, please note that refunds will only be issued until Thursday, April 14.

Help Wanted Study

As featured in a recent piece by Luke Malone on NPR’s This American Life, living with a sexual attraction to children can be difficult, especially for adolescents and young adults. Unfortunately, there are no treatment services or resources available for young people who are experiencing a sexual attraction to children and have not perpetrated sexual harm. To address this need, the Moore Center for the Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse and members from the Association for the Treat meant of Sexual Abusers (ATSA) are working together to develop Help Wanted, a primary prevention program for adolescents who have expressed a sexual interest in prepubescent children. The goal of this intervention is to promote self-acceptance and self-esteem while maintaining the message that children must never be sexually touched or harmed. More broadly, this project aims to change the way we think and talk about child sexual abuse and prevention.

Dr. Shields will highlight results from this qualitative study of non-offending pedophiles. To date, more than 30 adults who are sexually attracted to children, but have not offended against a child, have contacted the Moore Center and expressed an interest in sharing their own experiences. Qualitative interviews with these participants focus on adolescent experiences with sexual attraction to children, coping strategies developed during adolescence and needs that went unanswered—each component informing the subsequent development of the Help Wanted primary prevention program. The discussion of results will include visual data maps depicting key patterns and relationships, as well as qualitative data summaries with illustrative examples. Implications for prevention and the development of Phase 2 of Help Wanted will also be discussed.

About Ryan T. Shields, PhD

Ryan T. Shields, PhD is an assistant scientist in the Department of Mental Health and core faculty at the Moore Center. He received his doctoral degree in criminology from Florida State University in 2013. He currently serves as Co-PI or Co-investigator on five federally funded grants. His research is primarily centered on the intersection of criminology, criminal justice and public health. He is interested in sex crime policy, punishment, homicide and suicide. His work has appeared in Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment, Journal of Adolescent HealthCriminal Justice Policy Review, Journal of Criminal Justice, and other journals.

Child Maltreatment Student Poster Session

Following Dr. Shields' talk, please join us for our free poster session, which will provide excellent networking opportunities. Posters will feature all aspects of child maltreatment, including child sexual abuse, child physical abuse and neglect, bullying, peer-on-peer harassment and prevention policy and practice by graduate and undergraduate students. The session will run from 12:45 to 1:30 pm in Feinstone Hall (E2030); winners of the poster session competition will be announced during the session. If you are a student and would like to submit a poster abstract, please click here.