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Decker addresses Royal College of Psychiatrists

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Decker Budapest 2015Scott Decker, a foundation professor in the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice, provided a criminological perspective on gangs to members of Britain's Royal College of Psychiatrists who attended the Faculty of Forensic Psychiatry annual conference in Budapest, Hungary.

"There is a dearth of research and practice standards to guide psychiatric treatment of gang members," Decker says. "My talk was designed to take what is known about gang members and gang life from the developmental perspective and apply it to how psychiatrists may deal with gang members. The primary focus of the talk was on developmental pathways into and out of gang membership."

Decker is regularly invited to speak at universities and international conferences to share his knowledge and research on gangs. He has previously addressed the British Criminology Society, International Society of Criminology, the Eurogang Conference, the British Society of Criminology, the Internationale Societe de Criminologie and the European Society of Criminology.

Decker has studied the rise of gangs in the United States, Europe and Mexico for more than 35 years. He says there are lessons to be learned about their behavior and methods used to help young men and women leave gangs.

"The British health care system provides a wider range of services and serves a broader range of clientele than in the US," says Decker. "As a consequence, psychiatrists in Britain have begun to see gang members with increasing frequency."


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