The Connecticut Association for the Treatment of Sexual Offenders is a multi-disciplinary professional association serving the welfare of the community by promoting safe, effective and humane responses to the problems of child and adult sexual abusers.
CATSO grew out of the Sex Offender Treatment Provider's Network, which was begun in 1983, as a group of treatment providers who were beginning to specialize in the assessment and treatment of sexual abusers. Members met on a monthly basis to exchange information and resources, and to provide opportunities for further training. In 1990, the name was changed to reflect the broader purposes of promoting community safety through specialized assessment and treatment of sexual offenders in Connecticut.
CATSO members believe that community safety concerns should always be have the highest priority for professionals who specialize in the assessment and treatment of sexual abusers and offenders. CATSO providers recognize the importance of working with other service providers, community agencies and the criminal-justice system, to provide a comprehensive response to sexual offender problems. CATSO offers a statewide resource for professional development in this rapidly growing area of specialization, through professional communication, opportunities for continuing education and helping to set effective standards for sexual offender assessment and treatment services. Starting in 2000, CATSO representatives joined representatives of state agencies in Connecticut, on the Sexual Offender Policy Advisory Committee, which drafted a set of standards for the assessment and treatment of sexual offenders.
CATSO is made up of mental health and allied professionals who recognize the importance of providing up-to-date, effective assessment and treatment services to children who exhibit sexually-reactive behavior, and adolescents and adult sexual abusers and offenders. CATSO strives to assist professionals and community service providers in forming multi-faceted responses to the serious problem of sexual abuse.
CATSO provides a set of ethical principles specific to the special circumstances and concerns that often arise in the assessment and treatment of sexual abusers. In addition to providing services to individual sexual abusers or offenders, CATSO often have contact with families and friends, and with representatives of the community-at-large. CATSO ethical guidelines are followed within the context of the ethical guidelines of the specialized provider's mental health or addictions treatment discipline, and statutory reporting laws.
CATSO members seek to further the public's recognition that special training and expertise are needed to effectively treat sexual abusers and offenders. CATSO providers seek to coordinate their services with the services of other professionals, and work to further the public awareness of the importance of specialized sexual offender treatment.
The Benefits of CATSO Membership Include:
Enhanced Professional Recognition through affiliation with an organization that is dedicated to improving community resources for assessing and treating sexual offenders.
Ethics and Standards for professional conduct in the treatment of sexual offenders.
Increased Communication among treatment professionals and allied professionals in the field.
Personal and Professional Support at all levels of response to problems posed by sexual offenders.