The Society for Social Work and Research

2013 Annual Conference

January 16-20, 2013 I Sheraton San Diego Hotel and Marina I San Diego, CA

Motivational Parent Management Training (MPMT) in Community Corrections

Sunday, January 20, 2013: 11:45 AM
Executive Center 4 (Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina)
* noted as presenting author
Lew Bank, PhD, Senior Scientist, Oregon Social Learning Center, Portland, OR
Bowen McBeath, PhD, Associate Professor, Portland State University, Portland, OR
Claudette L. Grinnell-Davis, MSW, PhD Candidate, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, Ann Arbor, MI
Background. Corrections system involvement places adults at increased risk of negative outcomes, including new arrests and convictions, ongoing substance abuse, and poor employment trajectories. The majority (70%) of incarcerated adults are parents who will reenter their communities (Petersilia, 2003). Successful reintegration is essential in reducing adverse outcomes. In addition to 12 weekly group sessions that focus on parenting skills, MPMT provides weekly home visitation with intensive support and individual coaching. As usual community (AUC) control includes court- and agency-mandated requirements including community service, and alcohol and drug abuse groups.  

Methods. Participants consisted of families with at least one parent involved with community corrections (n=152).  Families met eligibility requirements if the primary adult (PA) had significant contact with at least one child.  Individuals previously convicted of violent crimes or suspected of predatory sexual behavior were excluded from study enrollment. Families were randomly assigned to either MPMT or AUC. 78 men and 74 women (mean age=31.49 years) on parole or probation comprise the PA sample. This sample reports low income, with 38% less than $1,000 and 72.5% less than $2,000 per month.  32.9% had not completed high school; 47% had a high school diploma or GED. Unemployment was 64% for women and 22% for men. About 30% of the sample was non-White.

Results. Analysis of substance use outcomes show critically important reductions at six months in the intervention group but not in the AUC group for recent methamphetamine use (p<.05) and across the summed use of illegal substances other than methamphetamine (p<.01).  These initial tests indicate intervention efficacy, and findings support the hypothesis that MPMT intervention reduces substance use for both men and women as compared to the AUC control. The hypothesized effects for recidivism at 18-month assessment were confirmed. Group differences for arrests, convictions, and crime severity emerged; however, there were important gender differences.  PA mothers assigned to MPMT had significantly fewer arrests than AUC mothers at the 18-month assessment.  Of those women with convictions during the follow-up year, the AUC women were convicted of significantly more severe crimes and received significantly more court orders for substance abuse treatment than convicted MPMT women.  There were similar trends for MPMT men with self-reported arrests, but Oregon archival records of arrests and convictions supported the self-report efficacy results for women only. With employment patterns, we found small but significant changes at the 6- and 18-month assessments, with the MPMT mothers more likely to find work, while other PAs had often lost jobs they held earlier. As PAs completed community supervision, they became less likely to be employed; MPMT mothers, on average, fared best.

Conclusions. Efficacy results at 18-month follow-up revealed that MPMT intervention group women experienced significant reductions in recidivism and substance use as compared to other treatment/gender groups as well as significant increments in employment. These findings have led us to believe that next steps in this program of research should be conducted with women released recently from jail or prison who are living with their children in the community.