The prevalence of learning disability among young male offenders: Implications for health care and criminal justice policy makers.

Victoria Herrington

    Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperConference paperpeer-review

    Abstract

    The terms learning disability (LD), mental handicap and mental retardation have been used throughout the research literature to refer to a condition characterised by a significant impairment of intelligence and impaired adaptive behaviour, which manifests before the age of 18. There continues to be debate about whether individuals with LD are over represented in the criminal justice system. Studies investigating the prevalence of LD among offenders have generally yielded inconsistent results (ranging from <1 per cent to >45 per cent) largely due to the variety of methodologies used, and the stage of the criminal justice system that the research has been conducted. Results from studies examining offending among those known to specialist LD services have been equally varied. This paper outlines a prevalence study conducted in a Young Offender Institution in England, commissioned as responsibility for prisoners' health, including management of learning disability, transferred to the local health care provider (primary care trust). The paper will present findings from the research, and discuss implications for public health and criminal justice policy makers. The practical issues faced by prisons overseeing this group will be considered, and comparisons will be drawn with management systems elsewhere.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationUnderstanding Crime
    Subtitle of host publicationStructural and developmental dimensions and their implications for policy
    Place of PublicationGermany
    PublisherEuropean Society of Criminology
    Pages39/75
    Publication statusPublished - 2006
    Event6th Annual Conference of the European Society of Criminology - Tübingen, Germany, Germany
    Duration: 26 Aug 200629 Aug 2006

    Conference

    Conference6th Annual Conference of the European Society of Criminology
    CountryGermany
    Period26/08/0629/08/06

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