Although girls and women represent only a minority of the forensic mental health and prison populations, studies worldwide suggest that there has been a steady increase in the number of females being convicted for committing offenses, especially violent offenses.
In this chapter, an overview will be provided on the specific risks and needs of female offenders and the relevance of gender-responsive treatment in forensic mental health services. First, the literature into the prevalence and nature of offending by females will be reviewed, with a focus on violent offending. Next, the most recent knowledge in the field will be summarized with respect to gender-sensitive risk assessment and gender-responsive treatment in forensic mental health care. Finally, some recommendations will be provided for mental health professionals working with females in forensic mental health services and for future research.