Criminal Justice

An exploration of factors that predispose individuals with FASD to involvement with the Criminal Justice System

Individuals with FASD are involved in the Criminal Justice System at an alarming rate. Research shows that individuals with FASD are over 19 times more likely to encounter the CJS than individuals who do not have FASD. Living with an unknown-untreatable lifelong condition means it is difficult for them to stay out of trouble with the law. They may not be aware of their condition and less likely to get the right level of support. Moreover, they are unlikely to know how to deal with the police, judges, social workers, psychiatrists, and probation officers, and others they may encounter if they get into trouble with the law.

What are the factors that predispose the FASD population to encounters with the CJS? This is an unexplored area in the UK and given the staggering number of encounters with the CJS it is vital to understand these factors and the complexities related to appropriate service provision for these vulnerable individuals.  

The aim of our research is to bridge the gaps in research in this area, which is currently limited, and thereby impact the CJS’s approach in the interrogation of individuals with FASD.

The FASD group is currently undergoing the following sub-studies:

Study 1: a qualitative study to understand the factors that may increase criminal justice encounters from the perspectives of FASD-impacted individuals and their parents/carers

Study 2: psychological assessment to assess the memory, impulsivity, IQ, and suggestibility of FASD-impacted young people (11 – 17years old).

Participant Recruitment

We are currently recruiting young adults (11 – 35years old) with FASD/Prenatal alcohol exposure alongside their parents or carers as part of a study called “Exploring the Factors that predispose individuals with FASD to encounters with the criminal justice system”

Please contact us if you are interested to take part in this study!

d.j.gilbert@edu.salford.ac.uk