Inmates are referred to WRC/WWRC due to severe impairments in daily living due to mental health and behavioral issues. The Department of Corrections (DOC) has identified key issues that WRC/WWRC works with inmates on including acute mental health symptoms; suicidality; self-injurious behavior; severe trauma and stress reactions; highly reactive and maladaptive responses to incarceration; serious substance use disorders; and needs for significant assistance in release planning due to mental health issues. WRC/WWRC focuses its treatment programming around these key issues.
Inmates are placed in small units that support and encourage positive change; monitor and document daily living skills and social interactions; and prepare them for return to DOC or for release to the community.
The housing units at WRC/WWRC are divided into five service areas. Each service area shares a common mission. Treatment is coordinated to meet the needs of the inmates within the service area. Units typically house 18 to 30 inmates in the men’s units and 8 to 20 in the women’s units.
- Psychiatric Service Area: Units 2, 12, and 15 receive and work with inmates with the most acute mental health symptoms. Many of the inmates on these units are presently or are in the process of mental health commitment. Inmates sent to WRC after a finding of not competent to stand trial also are treated on these units.
- Maximum Service Area: Units 16, 17, and 18 are designed for men referred from and returning to maximum security institutions in DOC. While maintaining efforts to engage inmates in their treatment and work through issues; the units also seek to model more closely the higher level of restrictions found at maximum security.
- Medium Service Area: Units 1 and 7 are designed for men referred from and returning to medium security institutions in DOC. This engages inmates in treatment as well as prepares them for return to DOC at medium custody levels. Most inmates are in double cells.
- Substance Use Disorder (SUD) and Release Service Area: Units 3, 5, 6, 8, 9, and 10 focus on preparing inmates for release to the community, including working on drug and alcohol issues if that is needed. The unit program emphasizing inmates’ choice-making and release planning. Inmates from both maximum and medium security institutions send inmates to WRC for release preparation, including engaging in combined substance use and mental health treatment. Alison Lund is the SUD Clinical Coordinator.
- High Management: Units 4 and 11 provide highly controlled and structured facilities for inmates unable to be managed safely on more open units. Safety concerns are both for dangerousness to self and to others. The units actively seek to re-engage Inmates in treatment and assist inmates in moving to less restrictive areas as soon as is safely possible.
- Women’s Service Area (WWRC): Units 20, 21, and 22 provide a range of mental health services to female inmates from Taycheedah Correctional Institution. Units 21 and 22 work collaboratively to provide a range of structure and support as needed by the women while they are involved in therapeutic treatment services. Unit 20 is the Specialized Treatment Unit (STU) offering a six month closed-treatment group for women struggling with severe traumatic reactions.
Core treatment programs are evidence-based interventions that target the most frequent reasons that inmates are referred to WRC/WWRC. Inmates are referred by their treatment teams based on the inmate’s treatment plan.
Applying Wellness and Recovery Everyday (AWARE)
Applying Wellness and Recovery Everyday (AWARE) is a group which explores ways to achieve and maintain physical and mental wellness.
Based on the five key recovery concepts (hope, personal responsibility, education, self-advocacy, and support), participants will create their own plan to stay well.
This group focuses on coping skills; strategies to manage frustration, anxiety, anger; and challenging mistaken beliefs and thought distortions. It provides inmates with coping skills they can use in both DOC and in the community. Offered on Units 4, 11, and 16.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
Individuals who have a history of significant behavior problems including such things as self-injury, aggression, impulsivity, or interpersonal difficulties related to intense and reactive emotions may be referred to this group. They will learn skills in the areas of mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness. Skills practice outside of group sessions is an important part of participation and the focus is on using skills to reduce or eliminate their maladaptive behaviors.
Illness Management and Recovery (IMR);
Class topics may include but are not limited to maintaining mental health, mental health problems, interventions, and understanding mental health disorders and their symptoms; coping styles and alternatives to negative coping styles, institution and community support systems, developing and maintaining participant support systems, and developing a healthier quality of life during incarceration especially when also addressing major mental health diagnoses and interventions. Some classes may also include medication compliance and/or issues.
Individual Trauma Therapy
Individuals whose trauma symptoms are causing significant problems in their daily functioning. (Note: individual treatment is offered to those inmates who have participated in MTREM/TREM, but are still experiencing significant problems in their daily functioning.) Three different types of individual trauma therapy currently are offered: Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Exposure Therapy (ET), and Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT).
Trauma Recovery and Empowerment Model (M-TREM/TREM)
MTREM/TREM is for individuals whose trauma symptoms are causing significant problems in their daily functioning. This is a group that meets twice a week for 24 sessions to explore and discuss the impact of violence on their lives and healthy ways of coping with and healing from their past.
Pre-Release programs are for inmates approaching release to the community. A wide range of educational, skill-focused and treatment groups are offered. Each inmate goes through a process called “mapping” in which the area(s) most relevant to the individual’s success is identified. Then groups and classes are chosen to address those areas.
Successful Treatment and Recovery (STAR)
The WRC Dual Diagnosis AODA Program is open ended requiring approximately six months to complete. As the inmate’s readiness to engage in treatment increases, he will be assigned to modules which have been identified specifically for him via an individualized mapping process. The inmate is an active participant in designing his own treatment plan; his input is sought and respected throughout his program. The program requires participation in the Core AODA treatment Group (4 hrs/wk), the Emotional Management Skills group (2 hrs/wk) as well as the development of a wellness plan. Other modules are selected according to the inmate’s needs and interests. Completion of treatment is determined upon presentation of a series of assignments and a final project discussing their treatment journey.
Treat to Competency
This class/group provides the student with a thorough understanding of the U.S. court system, a citizen’s legal rights, and basic information included in the competency manual necessary to pass the evaluator’s assessment.
An in-depth psychological assessment can be completed with people who require an evaluation beyond that available by unit psychological staff.
Referrals can assess issues related to mental health diagnosis, personality and behavioral functioning, treatment recommendations, and behavioral risk.