The sexual abuse of young people with disabilities: Treatment considerations

  • Sheila Mansell
  • Dick Sobsey
  • Lorraine Wilgosh
  • Andre Zawallich


Research has indicated that sexual abuse of individuals with disabilities is frequently repeated and chronic, and often results in significant harm to the victim. Furthermore, while abusers are most often family members or acquaintances, many offenses are committed by paid service providers and occur in disability service settings. Findings indicate that victims with disabilities often experience difficulty in obtaining treatment services that are accessible and appropriately adapted to their needs. Based on the necessity of appropriate treatment, considerations and strategies are discussed for therapy adaptations to meet the special needs of sexually abused young people with developmental disabilities.


Family Member Young People Service Provider Sexual Abuse Treatment Service 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sheila Mansell
    • 1
  • Dick Sobsey
    • 1
  • Lorraine Wilgosh
    • 1
  • Andre Zawallich
    • 1
  1. 1.Abuse and Disability Project, Developmental Disabilities Centre, Department of Educational PsychologyUniversity of AlbertaCanada

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