Criminal justice

The majority of prisoners have mental health problems, often two or more at the same time. Imprisonment doesn't seem to reduce re-offending and it costs a great deal. We're finding more ways to fix this by developing liaison and diversion services, advocating community sentences, improving youth justice and unlocking secure care.

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Diversion shows diversion from custody is still much cheaper than just a few weeks in prison. Well-designed diversion schemes can help to reduce reoffending by one third.
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Only a small proportion of prisoners in England have jobs to go to on release and employment support is too often denied to offenders with mental health problems.
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Under the Radar calls for better diversion from custodial sentences for women with a personality disorder and increased training for prison staff.
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Promoting and protecting the mental health and wellbeing of offenders can have wide-ranging benefits for individuals, their families and their communities.
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Diverting offenders to community support rather than prisons would save money in the justice system and reduce reoffending rates.
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This paper examines what justice workers need to help them to help to implement the 82 recommendations of Lord Bradley's review of how the justice system supports people with mental health problems or learning disabilities.
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A very high proportion of those who have the most serious conduct problems during childhood will go on to become involved in criminal activity.
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Diverting people with mental health problems from prison is good value for taxpayers money but existing diversion arrangements are not achieving their potential.
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Continuity of care is especially important for released prisoners with mental health problems to help them get their lives back on track on the outside.
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This briefing calls on the NHS to manage health care for people in police custody and to take a more active role in diverting people with mental health problems to the services they need.
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