Monday, September 25, 2017
Frontline Issue 91
frontline 91-1


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Stephen Kealy

This issue of Frontline has as its theme forensic issues in disability. All articles have detailed references which are not included for space reasons, but they are available from the Editor on request. People with disabilities commit fewer crimes than able-bodied people, but they are disproportionally represented in higher numbers within the custodial system. Many of the topics discussed in the articles here are not often openly aired, but attention does need to be paid to them, and, in particular, how as a society we balance competing rights...

In disability organisations, it is service users themselves who have the very least amount of power and influence, and yet they are the reason why the service exists in the first place, argues Siobhán MacCobb

It is a fact of life that by the time a hierarchical organisation grows to be able to deliver its founders’ mission, the ground has shifted and it is out of date. And, more importantly, the organisation then takes on the mission to continue its own existence and prosper. Layers of defences are built into its systems and structures, policies and procedures, in order to maintain organisational stability and clarity for the organisation’s membership, and to affirm its own standing against threats of incompetency from the outside world. Our building societies and banking system are a good example of this...

by Evan Yacoub, Consultant Psychiatrist, Brothers of Charity Galway, Woodlands Centre, Renmore, Co Galway.

The recent Winterbourne Scandal in the UK (Department of Health 2012) is a reminder of the importance of designing, commissioning and providing services which give people with intellectual disabilities the support they need close to home, and which are in line with well established best practice...

Charlotte Staniforth, Chartered Clinical Psychologist & Mary Barnes, Art Psychotherapist explain that good planning is essential in the transition of young people from youth to adult services.

Transitions are a natural part of life, but they can present many challenges, even for those of us who are psychologically robust. Adolescence is the developmental phase when young people move towards adulthood. There are a number of associated changes and demands that occur during this time which can be particularly difficult to manage if the young person has a developmental disability. The process is complicated further with the addition of social or psychological problems...

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Mary de Paor on an innovative course at DCU that brings three disability stakeholders together for service change

DCU course members

Issue 88 of Frontline (Autumn 2012, pp.18-19) included an article by Deirdre Corby in Dublin City University’s School of Nursing and Human Sciences, in which she described the development of an innovative course module enabling ‘three ordinary stakeholders of an intellectual disability service’ to bring about service change/improvement. This article offers a short account of the DCU course, from the perspective of a participant this year...

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by Darshini Ramasubbu

David O’Connor, who attends Prosper Fingal services, and works as check-out support in Supervalu Malahide on Fridays, receives advice on minding his teeth. David is a keen sports person who enjoys golf and swimming.
David O’Connor, who attends Prosper Fingal services, and works as check-out support in Supervalu Malahide on Fridays, receives advice on minding his teeth. David is a keen sports person who enjoys golf and swimming.

Caring for our own mouths is a challenge—but for the mouths of others, even more so. Carers, family members, hospital workers and parents can...

Witnesses with learning disabilities should be assessed first and then treated with special care says Leslie Cuthbert.

Imagine for a moment that you are the decision maker in some kind of hearing, for example, a court case. You’re part of the jury and hear the following exchange between the Judge and the witness giving evidence...

Glynis H Murphy, Tizard Centre, University of Kent, & Neil Sinclair, Sinclair-Strong Consultants Ltd.

Since the 1980s, it has been known that people with intellectual disabilities are particularly likely to be sexually abused, compared to other care groups. It has turned out that most of the abusers are men, and that roughly 50% them are family members or staff. But roughly 50% are men who themselves have intellectual disabilities, often men sharing services of some kind with the victims (Turk and Brown 1993; Brown et al. 1995; McCarthy and Thompson 1997)...

Noelle Sammon, Research Assistant, HSE Psychology Department, Abbey Town House, Roscommon.

Individuals with an Intellectual Disability (ID) who wish to become, or have become, parents can face considerable difficulties in their interaction with the legal system in Ireland. Becoming a parent is something that can present quite a struggle for individuals with an ID (McConnell and Llewellyn 2002). Historically cases have been brought before the courts by the parents of individuals with an ID, in order to prevent them from having a child through enforced sterilisation (McConnell and Llewellyn 2002)...