Friday, April 28, 2017
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Frontline Issue 91
frontline 91-1

Articles

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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...

Lucy Adamson, Chartered Forensic Psychologist, Jackie O’Connell, Senior Occupational Therapist, Carol Reffin, Highly Specialist Speech and Language Therapist, Anne McLean, Chartered Consultant Clinical Forensic Psychologist work with St. Andrews’s Health Care Service. Caroline Power, Chartered Forensic Psychologist, works with Oaktree Manor, a low-security service for adult males & females with learning disabilities. The authors have a wide range of experience working with adolescents who display sexually harmful behaviour.

It is important to acknowledge when working with young people who have engaged in sexually harmful behaviour (SHB), that we cannot automatically apply what we know about adult sexual offending to young people, and equally what we know about young people and sexuality will not always fit for young people with Developmental Disabilities (DD). The term DD is used here as an umbrella term to incorporate intellectual disabilities and Autism...

by Siobhán Kane, Communications & Information Manager

Two reports on Disability Allowance (DA) and Domiciliary Care Allowance (DCA) were commissioned following plans announced in the December 2011 Budget, which included proposed cuts to DA for young adults aged 18-24, and raising the qualifying age for DA from 16 to 18. Both proposals were paused pending reviews...

by Siobhán Nic Coitir, Senior Counselling Psychologist/Intern Forensic Psychologist & Patrick Randall, Director, Forensic Psychological Services highlight the need for more specialists with experience of intellectual disability within the criminal justice system...

Forensic Psychological Services (FPS) provides clinical and forensic services to organisations and to individuals in the public and private sectors. Referrals to FPS are made by the HSE, the gardaí, legal and medical professions, the courts, therapeutic services, professional bodies and individual clients. FPS provides psychological assessments, risk assessments, victim impact statements, parenting capacity assessments, expert witness testimony in family, civil and criminal courts, and individual and group psychotherapy.

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Angelina Veiga reviews Alan Corbett’s seminar

I sat in anticipation waiting to hear Dr Corbett begin his seminar on intelligence and intellectual disability. I was already familiar with Dr Corbett’s important work, as he is a distinguished clinician who has steadily been working away as a disability psychotherapist for over two decades; however this was a very special night. The seminar itself was taking place on the 3rd floor of the Tavistock Centre (Belsize Lane), where Neville Symington and later Valerie Sinason conducted the workshops on mental handicap. It felt extremely fitting to be back in the room to hear about new progressions in this dynamic and involving field...

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...