Publications

Below are the publications that SOLD have produced. We are working towards developing a comprehensive pack of resources including guidance for professionals, and easy read information for service users which are intended to improve fair and equal access to the criminal justice system. Please use the links for more information and to download them for free.

Supporting Offenders with Learning Disabilities - In Police Custody - Findings Report

Improving Support for the Accused Person with a Learning Disability – In Police Custody

This report collates the input from keynote speakers and feedback from delegates who attended the SOLD conference ‘Improving support for the accused person with a learning disability in police custody’, held on 27th March 2017 in Edinburgh.

This was a follow-up event to the one we held previously in August 2016, and focused access to support in police custody. The purpose of the event was to address two main questions:

How best to identify that a person in police custody needs support with communication?
What is the best way to support that person?

The conference was fully subscribed and was attended by 90 delegates, all of whom have an interest in the criminal justice system.

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Imporoving Support for people with learning disabilities - from arrest to court

Improving support for people with learning disabilities – From Arrest to Court

This report collates the feedback from delegates who attended the SOLD conference ‘Improving support for the accused person with a learning disability from arrest through to court’, held on 24th August 2016 in Edinburgh.

This event focused on access to support from the point of arrest to the conclusion of the court process. This was partly timed to coincide with the Scottish Government’s review of appropriate adult services, and partly because the SOLD User group had identified it as an important issue.

The conference was fully subscribed and was attended by 92 delegates, all of whom have an interest in the criminal justice system.

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Practice Guide for Support Workers – People With Learning Disabilities in the Scottish Criminal Justice System

Practice Guide for Support Workers – People With Learning Disabilities in the Scottish Criminal Justice System

Our Practice Guide was produced by the Supporting Offenders with Learning Disabilities (SOLD) network in collaboration with our justice partners. It aims to help support workers from all sectors who find the person with learning disabilities they support, in the criminal justice system.

It provides information about how Support Workers can make a well-informed, constructive contribution, which is valued not just by the person they support, but also by partner professionals in the criminal justice system.

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Arrest - Easy Read Guide front cover

Arrest – an easy read guide

This guide explains what happens when a person is arrested by the police. And it does it in a way that is easy to understand.

The guide gives information about:

  • Being arrested
  • At the police station
  • What the police will need from you
  • Police interview
  • What happens next
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Guidance for using SOLD Easy Read guides

The SOLD user group have produced a series of easy read guides aimed at people with learning disabilities. These guides cover different aspects of the criminal justice system in Scotland and draw on the members’ own experiences.

However, it should be remembered that not every person with a learning disability is able to use Easy Read; most people with learning disabilities will require additional support to access information, via support workers or carers, and some may also require information in audio or video formats.

Simply passing someone with a learning disability information set out in an easy read format does little on its own to guarantee understanding. When these guides are being used by someone passing through the justice system they should be used as a complement to 1-to1 personalised support.

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The Criminal Justice Pathway for People with Learning Disabilities: Challenges and opportunities for change

The Criminal Justice Pathway for People with Learning Disabilities: Challenges and opportunities for change

This report seeks to inform and guide local and national planning and practice related to improving support for people with learning disabilities whose behaviour brings them into contact with the criminal justice system and to reduce offending by them.

The report identifies 6 key challenges and the opportunities to address them.

The six key challenges identified are that-

  1. People with a learning disability who are at risk of coming into contact with the criminal justice system should receive the individual support they need to address their (potential) offending behaviour.
  2. People with a learning disability coming into contact with the criminal justice system should have access to a full range of sentencing options.
  3. There should be Information sharing protocols between different organisations in the criminal justice pathway.
  4. People with learning disabilities have the information and support they need to ensure that they are not dis-advantaged as a result of their disability.
  5. The right to a fair trial of people with a learning disability is protected.
  6. Suitable support is available to people with learning disabilities to help end the cycle of reoffending.

This report was written with the assistance of the network members.  The network also consulted with people with learning disabilities who have experience of the criminal justice system and their views are detailed in the report.

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SOLD simplified Criminal Justice Pathway for adult offenders

Simplified Criminal Justice Pathway for adult offenders

This shows the various stages of the criminal justice system in the form of a diagram intended to make that process easier to understand and navigate.

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