Cults and Support for Former Cult Members

Information on Cults and Support for Former Cult Members
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Upcoming ICSA Events

Featured Event:

The International Cultic Studies Association (ICSA) will conduct its 2019 Annual International Conference jointly with Info-Secte/Info-Cult of Montreal and with the Psychology of Coercive Control Masters Program and the Connected Lives Diverse Realities Research Group and Criminal Justice Hub at the University of Salford.

Where/When: Manchester, UK - Holiday Inn Manchester City Centre, July 4-6, 2019.  On July 3, 2019 there will be Preconference Workshops on education, mental health, former-member recovery, research, and families. Preconference Workshops are free for conference registrants.  

Conference Theme: Coercive Control and the Psychology of Influence across Comparative Contexts – Implications for Policy, Practice and the Criminal Justice Process

Conference Information

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Program: With more than 100 speakers, this conference will offer many sessions pertinent to former members and survivors, families, professionals, researchers, and others, such as


Leaving and Recovering From Cultic Groups and Relationships (Michael Langone, PhD; Patrick Ryan)

Using Legal Analysis to Address Claims of Spiritual Abuse, by Danya Shakfeh, Esq.

Cults and Sex Trafficking, Andy Vogel, MSW

Litigating Child Custody with Religious Cults by Ford Greene, Esq. "Litigating child-custody or visitation disputes is a complex endeavor. Because of the special protection the law accords religious beliefs, attorneys must carefully collect relevant facts and use appropriate language. Without questioning the truth or falsehood of a group's religious doctrines, attorneys should try to demonstrate that the group's practices are physically or psychologically detrimental to the child. Information from a variety of sources, including teachers, school psychologists, social workers, therapists, etc., should be considered. Several case examples are discussed."

Cults in Court - by Sara Van Hoey. Published by ICSA: "Harms associated with cultic groups have been addressed through various forms of self-help, conservatorship, habeas corpus proceedings, consumer protection legislation, and litigation."

Exit Counseling and the Decline of Deprogramming - by Stephen A. Kent and Joseph P. Szimhart. Published by ICSA: "An old model of forcibly deprogramming persons from controversial ideological organizations has given way to progressive, non-coercive models that emphasize dialogue within voluntary “exit counseling” settings. These non-coercive models approach counseling events partly as family crises that usually require careful preparation with relatives and friends. Counselors structure the meetings in ways that work within the value systems of the groups from which they are trying to remove their subjects."

"Antisocial Personality Disorder in Cult Leaders" John Burke, Ph.D., Kaiser Permanente. Published by the International Cultic Studies Association (ICSA) ... Read more

Mental Health Interventions in Cult-Related Cases: Preliminary Investigation of Outcomes by Steve K. Dubrow Eichel, M.S., Linda Dubrow Eichel, M.A., Roberta Cobrin Eisenberg, M.S.W. - Shared from the International Cultic Studies Association (ICSA) website. "Do our interventions work? This question is undoubtedly on the minds of many professional counselors and lay advisors engaged in clinical work with cultists, former cultists, and their families. Since October 1983, the associates of the RETIRN have maintained a record of all face-to-face consultations and subsequent interventions ..." continue reading

Upcoming ICSA Events

Recovering From Spiritual Abuse: A Conference for Survivors, Churches, and Helpers
October 26-27, 2018
Hartford, Connecticut

Recovering from Cults and Coercive Control: A Workshop for Former Members and Families
October 13, 2018 (Saturday)
Los Angeles, CA

Surviving and Moving On After a High-Demand Group Experience: A Workshop for Those Born/Raised in Cults
April 26 - 28, 2019
Chester, Connecticut

Europe Conference: Controversies in Religious Contexts
October 26-27, 2018
Rzeszów, Poland


To learn more about the International Cultic Studies Association (ICSA), the psychological manipulation and abuse in cultic groups or to find help for you or a loved one, please visit the ICSA website.





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