Marissa Stanziani, Adam Coffey, Liz Bownes, Lauren Meaux, and Dr. Cox Published in Sexuality Research and Social Policy!
Cox, J., *Stanziani, M., *Coffey, C. A., *Bownes, E., Brooks-Holliday, S. F., & *Meaux, L.T. (2021). “Your rights end where mine begin:” A mixed-methods study of Moral Foundations Theory and support for bathroom bills. Sexuality Research and Social Policy.
As nearly half U.S. states have considered legislation that would restrict public restroom usage based on sex, in recent years this issue has come to the forefront of public discourse. To inform this policy, it is imperative to examine opinions regarding bathroom bills and how these opinions are shaped by individual differences. The current mixed-methods study examined the relationship between Moral Foundations Theory, bathroom bill opinions, and participant perceptions of their own support and opposition to this type of legislation. Undergraduate students at a large U.S. public university completed the Moral Foundations Questionnaire and indicated their opinion of a hypothetical bathroom bill. Subsequently, researchers interviewed 22 participants from this group about their perceptions of this bill and the factors that shaped these opinions. Approximately two-thirds of participants supported instituting a hypothetical bathroom bill. Regardless of political affiliation, the moral pillars Purity/Sanctity and Authority/Respect were associated with support for the bill and Care/Harm predicted opposition to the bill. Qualitative analyses of participant interviews provided further understanding of why participants supported (e.g., safety, fear, sacrifice) or opposed (e.g., equality, bill is unnecessary/impractical to implement) the bill. Participants acknowledged their opinions of the bill were likely shaped by personal relationships (e.g., with family members, friends) and their experiences (e.g., traveling, parochial education). The data suggest Moral Foundations Theory may be one framework to
understand differences in opinions regarding bathroom bill legislation.
Kois, L., *Meaux, L.T., Cox, J., & Kelley, S. (2021). Evaluators' experiences with combined competence to proceed and mental state evaluations. Psychology, Public Policy, and Law.
Combined evaluations of competence to proceed (CTP) and mental state at the time of the offense (MSO) are commonplace, yet underexamined in the literature. Given the high stakes faced by defendants and substantial arguments that can be made for and against combined evaluations, it is imperative that we understand how practitioners navigate this process. In this exploratory practitioner study (N = 43), we surveyed professional practices and beliefs concerning combined evaluations as well as how, per practitioners’ self-reports, they were influenced by jurisdictional policy. As is recommended in nascent areas of research, we undertook both quantitative and qualitative methods. Many evaluators reported a disconnect between the spirit of adjudicative competence and the combined CTP/MSO evaluation process. On the whole, evaluators reported that combined evaluations accounted for 29% of their CTP and/or MSO referrals, but only 10 (23.3%) reported that their jurisdiction specifically addressed how to conduct them. They tended to endorse that seemingly incompetent defendants cannot consent to MSO evaluations, and so MSO reports should not be submitted for these defendants. They provided some consensus that seemingly incompetent defendants can provide useful information later integrated into MSO evaluations and that CTP and MSO opinions should be documented separately. We recommend that jurisdictions include statutory language directing evaluators to refrain from submitting MSO opinions when they believe defendants are incompetent, for jurisdictions to explicitly require separate CTP and MSO reports and to distinguish disclosure rules for each report type, and further professional discussion about the nature and process of combined evaluations.
Campbell, L., Knauss, L., & *Meaux, L.T. (2021). The American Psychological Association ethics code & legal statutes regarding sexual boundary violations: History and current status. In A. Steinberg, J. L. Alpert, & C. A. Courtois (Eds.), Sexual Boundary Violations in Psychotherapy: Facing Therapist Indiscretions, Transgressions, and Misconduct.