RESEARCH & EVALUATION
People with intellectual and other disabilities are coming into contact with the criminal justice system in increasing numbers both as victims and witnesses of crimes, and as suspects and defendants of crimes. The criminal justice system and disability service system are ill-prepared to ensure and advocate for the legal rights of due process for individuals with intellectual and other disabilities.
Special Offenders' Programs in Pennsylvania Evaluation
The Special Offenders' program evaluation is designed to explore how Pennsylvania counties address the unique issues individuals with intellectual disabilities and other disabilities encounter when they come into contact with the criminal justice system. To gain further insights into this complex area, county MR administrators, or their designee are asked to participate in a short survey. The results of the survey will be compiled, along with recommendations, and submitted to the Mr. Kevin Casey, Deputy Secretary of the Office of Developmental Programs. Completion of the evaluation is expected by June 2008. (Funded by the Office of Developmental Programs)
Although violence takes many forms, the underlying causes are the same. Risk factors rooted in social injustices and inequities connect sexual violence to other forms of violence. These risk factors transcend boundaries and occur in individual, social, cultural and economic contexts. Victimization can happen to anyone, but for people with disabilities the risk is 4 to 10 times higher.
The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape in partnership with the Institute on Disabilities at Temple University and the Disability Rights Network, Inc. will facilitate focus groups with self advocates to explore their opinions about the best approaches to provide effective trainings. The information gathered from the focus groups will be used in development of a violence prevention curriculum. The results of the focus groups will also be used to generate papers on best practices for conducting training for people with various disabilities. (Funded by the Developmental Disabilities Council)
Beverly Frantz, Ph.D.
Collaborator: Carla Vierthaler, MPH
Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape
State of Pennsylvania. (2006). Special offenders programs in Pennsylvania: A preliminary evaluation. Philadelphia, PA