FMC Devens Mental Health of Prisoners

Sep, 19 11 Post by: admin | No Comments

Suicide Prevention

It is not uncommon for people to experience depression and hopelessness while in jail or prison, particularly if they are newly incarcerated, are serving a long sentence, are experiencing family problems, are having problems getting along with other inmates, and/or receive bad news. Sometimes, inmates consider committing suicide due to all the pressure they are under. Staff are trained to monitor inmates for signs of suicidality, and are trained to refer all concerns to the Psychology Department.

However, staff does not always see what inmates see. If you are personally experiencing any of the problems noted above, or you observe another inmate showing signs of depression (sadness, tearfulness, lack of enjoyment in usual activities), withdrawal (staying away from others, reducing phone calls and/or visits), or hopelessness (giving away possessions, stating that “there is nothing to live for”), please alert a staff member right away. Your input can save a life.

Sex Offender Treatment Program

Inmates interested in sex offender treatment are assessed for referral to either the BOP’s residential Sex Offender Treatment Programs (SOTP-R) available at FMC Devens, or the Non-Residential SOTP (SOTP-NR) available at other BOP sites. The SOTP-R is currently available only at FMC Devens, and is an intensive program for male inmates who volunteer for treatment, evidence a number of static and dynamic risk factors for re-offense, and who are committed to permanent behavior change. In addition, inmates who have successfully completed the SOTP-R are provided with maintenance sex offender treatment at FMC Devens.

Sex Offender Management Program

The Psychology Department coordinates a Sex Offender Management Program (SOMP). The SOMP is a mandatory program designed to help sex offenders manage their sexual behavior and reduce sexual recidivism. An important goal of this program is to help sex offenders change their criminal lifestyle and become honest, responsible, law abiding citizens with effective self control skills. SOMP participants have the same rights and responsibilities as other inmates at FMC Devens, including the right to personal safety, and to being treated respectfully, impartially, and fairly. Thus, disciplinary action will be taken against any inmate who harasses, threatens, or otherwise harms a sex offender, or any other inmate. As is the case with all inmates at FMC Devens, SOMP participants are expected to comply with all the rules and regulations governing inmate conduct as defined by the Federal Bureau of Prisons. Any inmate who engages in sexual misconduct at FMC Devens will be subject to disciplinary action.

Drug Treatment Programs

The Psychology Department offers the Non-Residential Drug Treatment, 40 Hour Drug Education program. The program is supplemented with various ongoing self help programs (i.e., Narcotics Anonymous, Alcoholics Anonymous). Those inmates who fail to attend required drug education classes will be restricted to a Pay Grade 4 and are not eligible for placement in a Residential Re-entry Center (Halfway House). The general goal of these programs is to provide the inmate with alternative ways to resolve problems.


The Psychology Department offers self-development programs in both group and individual counseling. Group counseling gives you an opportunity to interact with others, to share concerns and to draw upon their experiences and suggestions in finding alternative ways to solve problems. Group and individual counseling utilize a variety of methods, depending on the problem under consideration. Counseling can help inmates gain greater self-awareness, more effectively manage symptoms of depression, anxiety, and other mental disorders and develop more responsible decision making. Inmates interested in Self-Development Programs should see a member of their assigned Unit Team, or see a staff member in the Education Department, Psychology Department or Health Services Department for details and/ or appropriate referral.
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