An Open Letter to Judges, Prosecuting Attorneys and Human Resource Managers

Person-directed aggression and all forms of rage are dramatically increasing worldwide. While anger management is the most effective intervention for unhealthy anger, the lack of state or local standards poses risks for those in the position to mandate employees or defendants to attend such classes.

Currently, there are no regulations mandated for anger management providers anywhere. Consequently, Judges and Human Resource Managers have few guidelines to use in mandating perpetrators of “disruptive behavior” to attend coaching or anger management classes.

One unintended consequence of the absence of state or county standards in this area is the tendency to inappropriately refer such clients to counseling, psychotherapy, or domestic violence providers. According to the American Psychiatric Association, anger is a normal human emotion rather than a nervous or mental disorder. Therefore, anger is not responsive to psychotherapy or psychotropic medication.

Anger is a problem when it:

·Is too intense
·Occurs too frequently
·Lasts too long
·Leads to aggression or violence
·Has health consequences
·Destroys work or personal relationships

Providers of anger management must have a minimum of 40 hours of Facilitator Certification training, 16 hours of continuing education each year, an evidenced based curriculum which includes pre and post tests, client workbooks, CDs, DVDs and other ancillary training materials.

Anger management classes are designed to teach skill enhancement in recognizing and managing anger, stress, assertive communication and increasing empathy or emotional intelligence.

A list of Certified Anger Management Facilitators in the United States and Canada can be found by clicking here.

 

George Anderson, MSW, BCD, CAMF, CEAP
Diplomate, American Association of Anger Management Providers
Anderson & Anderson®, The Trusted Name in Anger Management
http://www.andersonservices.com/
http://www.aaamp.org
http://www.linkedin.com/in/geoanderson
www.anger-management-resources.org

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