Supporting Justice is aimed at improving the justice system's responses to mental health and disability.
Supporting Justice is a systems change project working with people with lived experience and key stakeholders from the criminal justice and disability service systems to address the over-representation of people with disability in the criminal justice system. Supporting Justice aims to drive systems change by:
- bringing people with disability to the centre of the process and ensuring their voices are heard in relation to justice system reform
- creating a safe space for justice and disability system actors to develop a shared understanding of the system
- facilitating collaborative approaches to challenges across justice, disability, health, housing and social services systems
- identifying shared and achievable priorities for justice system change
So far, the Supporting Justice project has:
- developed an online resource, supportingjustice.net, that provides practical resources for court and legal professionals to better respond to people with disability in the criminal justice system
- mapped the criminal justice system to visualise the factors that impact on people with disability in contact with the criminal justice system, and identify causal links between these factors and feedback loops that lead to people becoming entrenched within it
- supported the establishment of Voices for Justice self-advocacy training for people with ABI and lived experience of the criminal justice system to provide advice to policy-makers
The Supporting Justice project builds on CIJ’s earlier work, Enabling Justice, funded through a grant administered by the Office of the Public Advocate and delivered in partnership with Jesuit Social Services. This research, documented in the report Recognition Respect and Support: Enabling Justice for people with an Acquired Brain Injury, found that fragmented and inconsistent responses throughout the criminal justice and disability service systems meant that the needs of people with a disability were rarely recognised and responded to appropriately. Central to this project were people with lived experience of ABI and justice involvement, who formed a ‘justice user group’ and contributed to the report’s 35 recommendations for reform.
Supporting Justice Bulletins
The Supporting Justice bulletins are designed to keep project stakeholders informed about what’s going on, and to demonstrate how consultation and feedback is driving project decisions and outcomes. The bulletins will be sent out periodically over the duration of the Supporting Justice project. You can subscribe here, and read past editions of the bulletin below: