The purpose of this paper is to report on a three‐year contract to provide learning disability in‐reach to young offenders serving a sentence of Imprisonment for Public Protection (IPP) at HMYOI Aylesbury.
A whole population sample (n=75) was obtained between December 2009 and July 2011, where all had received an assessment of intellectual functioning using either the in‐reach screening protocol, consisting of the Kaufman Brief Intelligence Test – Version 2 (KBIT‐2) and four background questions, the Wechsler Abbreviated Scale of Intelligence (WASI) or the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS).
It was found that 5.5 per cent of the population had a standard score of less than 70 (significant impairment) and a further 18.6 per cent fell between 70 and 79 (borderline range). The mean standard score of the KBIT‐2 (85.8) was consistent with previous studies of prison populations. The background had a significant but weak association with the KBIT‐2 scores, but lacked sufficient specificity.
Further research is required if these findings are to be generalised to the wider prison population.
Systematic screening for learning disability can be of clinical benefit in identifying the needs of young offenders, which is the first step to addressing these needs.
A number of publications by the Department of Health, the Home Office and third sector organisations have identified the need for services for offenders with a learning disability. In‐reach provision to prisons is still in its infancy and, currently, no gold standard exists for screening tools.
Kelly, J., Collier, A. and Stringer, J. (2012), "Providing a learning disability in‐reach service for young adult offenders serving a sentence of Imprisonment for Public Protection", Journal of Learning Disabilities and Offending Behaviour, Vol. 3 No. 3, pp. 139-149. https://doi.org/10.1108/20420921211305882
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