Improving support for offenders with learning disabilities to complete their sentence

21 Mar, 2018
Norton Park Conference Centre,
Edinburgh
EH7 5QY

This SOLD event was held on Wednesday 21st March at Norton Park Conference Centre in Edinburgh.  It was fully booked, with ninety-five delegates attending on the day.

This represented the final part of a trilogy of events, having previously looked at ways of improving supports for cognitively impaired defendants in police custody and in court.

The Scottish Government is committed to the principle of presumption against short-term prison sentences, and increased use of community based disposals.  We are keen to ensure fair and equal access to Community Payback Orders, and that cognitively impaired people receive the support they need to comply and avoid unnecessarily breaching their Order.  We are also keen that people receive the communication support they need in prison and to break the cycle of re-offending.

Delegates were asked to consider the three following questions:

  • How do we ensure people with learning disabilities, autism and other communication difficulties receive the support they need to have fair and equal access to community-based alternatives to prison?
  • How do we ensure people with learning disabilities, autism and other communication difficulties receive the support they need whilst in prison, particularly with issues of “exclusion”, marginalisation, disempowerment and probable lack of activity in education, work training and programmes?
  • How do we ensure people with learning disabilities, autism and other communication difficulties receive the support they need to break the cycle of re-offending, particularly taking into account the different motivations that might lead people to re-offend? g. institutional dependency.

Our thanks go to David Strang, HM Chief Inspector of Prisons in Scotland for Chairing the event.  And to our keynote speakers:

Copies of the Programme, the Discussion Paper or powerpoint slides from the keynote presentations, can be viewed using the links below:

A report from the event is being written up and will be available here on the SOLD website in due course.

 

 

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