Learning Disability and the Criminal Justice System
"Supporting People with Learning Disabilities"
People with learning disabilities are more likely to be victims or witnesses of crimes than commit crimes.
This guide aims to make sure that people with learning disabilities are supported and protected when they have contact with criminal justice services.
People with learning disabilities may need help with:
- Knowing when situations or behaviour could be risky
People with learning disabilities may often be more vulnerable because they might need help with:
- Not understanding why other people do the things they do
- Communication - speaking, listening and understanding
- Understanding social situations
- Being tricked or bullied by others
- Reporting crimes
- Living in areas where there is a lot of crime
It is important to understand that some people with learning disabilities who commit crimes know that they have done wrong.
Being convicted of a crime can help someone with a learning disability to understand about consequences.
This may mean that they will not commit crimes again.
It is important to understand that some people with learning disabilities who commit crimes cannot cope with the criminal justice system.
This may be because they do not understand what they have done wrong.
This may be because they cannot understand the process of going through the criminal justice system.
This may mean that some people with learning disabilities do not follow the same process as everyone else.
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