Dorothy Griffiths, Ph.D.
Developing Positive Sexuality & Dealing with Inappropriate Sexual Behavior
A seminar for individuals involved in the education, training and treatment of persons with mental
retardation, autism and emotional disorders in residential, community and school settings.
Content of the Workshop: This seminar will provide a practical approach to
understanding and supporting the development of sexually appropriate behavior and for
intervening across the range of sexually inappropriate behavior. The focus of the seminar
will be on individuals with developmental disabilities. Part I of the seminar will address
factors that are obstacles to appropriate sexual development of persons with disabilities.
Case studies will be used to illustrate some barriers that exist in this regard, including
segregation, lack of privacy, social skills deficits, client vulnerability, and social attitudes.
Part II will include discussion of specific behaviors that may be problematic, including public
masturbation, aggressive sexual behaviors, and behaviors that involve invasion of privacy.
Strategies for assessing the dynamics of these behaviors will also be included. Part III of
the seminar will include discussion of intervention techniques that include social skills and
relationship education, sex education, teaching coping strategies, and arousal control
techniques. Finally, in Part IV, participants will have opportunities for small group discussion
and evaluation of several case studies. Throughout the seminar, emphasis will be placed
on incorporating lifestyle issues and nonaversive behavioral intervention into an overall
DOROTHY GRIFFITHS, Ph.D.
Dr. Dorothy Griffiths completed her doctoral degree in the areas of community psychology
and social competency in 1991 through the University of Toronto and is currently Professor
in the Department of Child Studies, Brock University, St. Catherines, Ontario. In 1989, she
wrote a ground-breaking book (with Vernon Quinsey and David Hingsburger) entitled
Changing Inappropriate Sexual Behavior: A Community-Based Approach for Persons with
For 15 years, she directed the York Behavior Management Services in Richmond Hill,
Ontario. In this capacity, she oversaw programs that provide behavioral support for persons
with developmental disabilities, as well as community assessment and rehabilitation for
persons with traumatic brain injury. She also administered research, public education, and
consultation projects, including services related to sexuality education and intervention. Dr.
Griffiths also has extensive training and expertise in the area of sexual abuse prevention.
In her work in the area of sexuality, Dr. Griffiths believes that individuals with developmental
disabilities have rights that include privacy, sexuality, freedom of choice, risk, and the right to
say “no” to service providers. The intervention approaches she will discuss in the seminar
include those that teach rather than simply suppress, that encourage rather than punish,
and that allow opportunities to earn trust and demonstrate responsibility. Dr. Griffiths is
widely known as a dynamic and interesting presenter, and her seminar is sure to be thought-
provoking and practical for persons concerned with sexuality issues for those they support.
Continuing Education Credits: Psychologists: Behavior Intervention Specialists, Inc.
(BIS) is approved by the American Psychological Association to offer continuing education
for psychologists. BIS maintains responsibility for the program. Program offers 6 CE credits.
All other participants will receive a certificate of attendance
Behavioral Objectives: After attending the workshop, the participants will be able to
discuss the following topics – 1. How lack of normative learning, segregation, and
restrictiveness contribute to the development of inappropriate sexual behaviors 2.
Differential diagnosis of the etiology of sexual acting-out behavior
3. Understanding specific problems such as perpetual arousal, public masturbation, and
sexual aggression 4. Education and treatment components across the ability range 5. The
affects of medication on sexual behavior 6. Case studies and group problem-solving
Who Should Attend: This workshop will provide essential information for program
administrators, behavior analysts, nurses, psychologists, QMRPs, social workers, special
educators, and supervisors of direct care providers. Workshop Format: Lecture, slides,
case studies and discussion.
8:00 – 8:30 Registration, Coffee, Snacks
8:30 – 11:30 Morning Session
11:30 – 12:30 Lunch (on your own)
12:30 - 3:30 Afternoon Session
About Behavior Intervention Specialists, Inc: Since 1985, we have sponsored over
850 training workshops in 44 states and two Canadian provinces, with total attendance of
over 38,000. Workshop topics have included -- active treatment, aggression, autism, dual
diagnosis, functional analysis, medication, self-injury, sexuality, social skills, and staff
Additional Information: Please call Dr. Walt Antonow at 662-234-1640 for any additional
information regarding the workshop, or if registering late.
Developing Positive Sexuality & Dealing with
Inappropriate Sexual Behavior
Inappropriate Sexual Behavior