Forensic Intervention Services (FIS) is a specialist program within Corrections Victoria.

FIS supports rehabilitation by providing evidence-based forensic intervention, working mainly with violent and sexual offenders.

We believe that every individual has the capacity to change and deserves the opportunity to do so.

 

Video transcript: An introduction to Forensic Intervention Services

Alfie Oliva, Director, Forensic Intervention Services:

“Forensic Intervention Services is a specialised area within Corrections Victoria. We specialise in providing offence-specific intervention for a range of service users that are in custody and in the community.”

Simone Shaw, Clinical Director, Forensic Intervention Services

“So we specifically work with men and women who have engaged in crimes involving sexual offences and violent offences.

“We do risk assessment screening, we do comprehensive risk assessments and then we provide psychologically based group interventions. So we’ll deliver programs both in prisons across the state and in the community.

Alfie Oliva:

“What we want to do is provide services and programs to people at highest risk in Victoria to reduce the risk of them reoffending and to limit the harm that’s done within the community.”

Simone Shaw:

“Men and women who come into any correctional system aren’t coming in willingly and often come from really difficult and dark spaces themselves.”

Alfie Oliva:

“We have to recognise that they are people who have been harmed themselves at some point in their lives so for us to treat and intervene we have to understand all facets of someone’s life.

“So Forensic Intervention Services is founded in the Risk Need Responsivity principles…”

Simone Shaw continues:

“…which is a model with decades worth of research sitting behind it, internationally in the correctional space and essentially the model is the framework on which we hang our practice.”

Alfie Oliva:

“So we are looking to target people’s risk, what needs they have in particular areas of their life and we want to do that in the most responsive way to have a positive impact.

“We recognise that it’s not in everyone’s skillset that as soon as they walk out of university or come from a relative field that they’re ready to jump into a room with 10 or 12 people who have committed offences.”

Simone Shaw:

“We have developed, and we implement, a really comprehensive clinical induction training program for all of our staff. So, we have a 16-week program. It’s a very engaging program that skills people up to feel not only safe to engage in the work they need to do, but really inspired by some of the innovative practices that we use in Forensic Intervention Services.

“Our vision is to really become forensic experts internationally in the delivery of offence-specific programming and so we continue to expand into some really exciting areas. We work in prisons, in the community, we work in the post-sentence space. Forensic Intervention staff have an opportunity to engage really broadly across Corrections Victoria.

“We are very keen to attract a comprehensive allied health workforce. So, obviously we engage psychologists, we engage social workers, occupational therapists and mental health nurses.

“We want people who have an optimism for change. So that’s essential to working in Forensic Intervention Services.”

Alfie Oliva:

“If you’ve made a decision to look at working in prisons and the community with people who are marginalised and disenfranchised, then you’ve got a passion for wanting to contribute to a safer community. You’ve got a passion for wanting to help people who most people will turn away from.”

Simone Shaw:

“So, it is a very challenging job, but it’s an incredibly rewarding one and as a clinical practitioner, there is so much opportunity to engage really broadly with the concept of behaviour change with people from all walks of life.”

Alfie Oliva:

“No two days are exactly the same, and I think you have this ability to be challenged in lots of different ways, professionally and personally.

Simone Shaw:

“We’re a really open space for learning, for developing and for becoming excellent forensic practitioners.”

Alfie Oliva:

“The support that you receive here, the challenges you’ll be able to kind of face, the hurdles you’ll be able to overcome and the growth you’ll experience is only achieved in a place like Forensic Intervention Services.”

Final screen:

Challenge yourself with Forensic Intervention Services

Justice.vic.gov.au/forensic-careers

Victoria State Government – Department of Justice and Community Safety

Working for change

Because of the complex nature of our work, we celebrate the small successes which:

  • contribute to community safety
  • provide the service user an opportunity to live a different life.

Bring your valuable experience to FIS

We are looking for people with experience in:

  • psychology
  • social work
  • mental health nursing
  • occupational therapy.

If this is you, FIS can offer highly rewarding work in a complex forensic setting, developing insights that can reduce reoffending and change lives.

A group of four clinicians sitting and talking at a corner table

Work in an organisation focused on excellence

Forensic Intervention Services is recognised nationally for the quality of its work and is heading quickly towards world best practice and outcomes.

Our services are grounded in the Risk Need Responsivity model with an emphasis on group-based interventions. This enables us to tailor interactions to service users’:

  • cultural backgrounds
  • personalities
  • learning styles.

FIS is also developing new practice areas such as:

  • Family Violence Perpetrator Intervention
  • Countering Violent Extremism
  • Restorative Justice.

Learn more