New Impact Focuses on the Justice System and People with Disabilities

Publication date: 
July 18, 2017

People with intellectual and developmental disabilities can face unique challenges, with potentially serious consequences, when involved with the juvenile or criminal justice systems. In community encounters with law enforcement, courtrooms, detention centers, or prisons individuals may have difficulty responding to questions, explaining what happened, or understanding and following instructions. Justice professionals may misinterpret behaviors as an intent to harm others, an admission of guilt, or defiance when, in fact, the person is expressing fear, distress, or lack of understanding, or is attempting to comply with social norms.

The new Impact: Feature Issue on the Justice System and People with Intellectual, Developmental, and Other Disabilities offers justice professionals, disability professionals, people with disabilities, and their families powerful and practical articles that help communities work together to address the challenges, and support equal access to justice for all. In this issue of Impact readers will find:

  • What justice system professionals need to know about people with intellectual and developmental disabilities
  • Models for identifying barriers to equal access and providing accommodations in courtrooms, prisons, and precincts
  • Training for de-escalation and diversion in encounters between law enforcement and people with disabilities
  • Creative strategies for supporting positive relationships between justice professionals and the disability community
  • Why families, educators, and disability service professionals need to discuss sexual nuances with youth and young adults
  • Models for supporting successful re-entry of youth with disabilities from juvenile justice facilities into the community, and for disrupting the school-to-prison pipeline
  • Prisons, the death penalty, and the rights of people with disabilities
  • Powerful personal stories, interactive related content, resources, and more!

The Impact series is published by ICI and the Research and Training Center on Community Living, University of Minnesota.