People with disability, particularly intellectual disability, are overrepresented in the Australian criminal justice system (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare - 2019; Hellenbach et al. 2017; Dias et al. 2013) and are a disadvantaged sub-population within the already disadvantaged prison population. Despite this, disability services are difficult to access in prison or are inadequate to meet individuals’ needs.
This study will investigate the intersection between disability and the criminal justice system in Australia, from the viewpoint of stakeholders who work with individuals with disability during or following their period of incarceration.
Using interviews, we will explore the availability and adequacy of disability services. We will explore issues such as: how people in prison with disability are identified; what supports are available to them while incarcerated and as they transition to the community; to what extent NDIS services are available to people in prison with disability; what challenges or obstacles may prevent a person’s access to suitable disability support while in prison; and how the needs of people in prison with disability might be better met within the prison environment.