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Prisoners Voices Caroline Adams Team Manager
“Experiences of the Criminal Justice Services by prisoners with learning disabilities”
No one Knows; The Main Findings This is what they found out about Prisoners with a possible learning disability
4 out of 5 found reading very hard
3 out of 4 found writing very hard
2 out of 3 found it hard to make others understand what they mean
Before getting in trouble… Many didn’t have a job
Many of them were excluded from school
1 out of 2 went to a special school
At the police station
Only 1 out of 3 had an appropriate adult to help them
Lots of them had help from a solicitor
1 out of 2 of them did not know what would happen after they were charged
Some said that the police beat them up
Some felt suicidal or like hurting themselves
Some felt tricked into having an an interview by the police
Some people were not given their medication
1 out of 5 did not know why they were in court
1 out of 3 said they would like people to use more simple words in court
One person said ‘I had no extra help even though they knew I had a learning disability
1 out of 2 felt scared or bullied
1 out of 2 went to educational classes
Many do not know when they will leave prison
Many do not have contact with friends and family, and spend time alone
Many would ask people for help if they did not understand
Many would not know what to do if they felt unwell
Many have depression or anxiety
What did the report say should Change?
Everyone should have an equal service and the same chances
People should be protected from abuse
Everyone should have an appropriate adult if interviewed by the police
All information should be in easy read
If someone offends then police should find out if they have a learning disability
They should be given the help they need to understand by people who know how to help
People should have different places to go and get help, not just prison
What are we doing in Walsall?
We have a specialist team for people with learning disabilities who offend
We are trying to help the police to learn about people with learning disabilities and teaching them what they can do to help
We are working with probation, police and court diversion to make them aware of who we are and how we can help.
We have different places where people can get help
We run treatment programmes in the community to help people stay out of trouble
We find people places to live and help them when they are ready to move
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