Search results

1 – 10 of 15
To view the access options for this content please click here
Article

Marie-Claire Van Hout and Des Crowley

The incarceration of transgender people is described as a “double punishment” based on lack of gender recognition and ability to gender affirm, and with their experiences…

Abstract

Purpose

The incarceration of transgender people is described as a “double punishment” based on lack of gender recognition and ability to gender affirm, and with their experiences and conditions in prison tantamount to torture. The purpose of this study is to illustrate the continued “double punishment” of incarcerated transgender people (in particular trans-women) and identify and describe breaches in human and gender rights and minimum standards of care.

Design/methodology/approach

There is limited global data on the numbers of incarcerated transgender people, an identified vulnerable prison group. There are inherent difficulties for prison authorities regarding placement, security aspects and management of transgender persons. While the concerns apply to all transgender prisoners, the current literature focusses mainly on transgender women and this commentary reflects this present bias. A socio-legal approach describes and evaluates international human rights’ conventions and human rights’ law, soft law instruments mandating non-discriminatory provisions in the prison setting and relevant European and domestic case law.

Findings

Transgender prisoners experience an amplification of trauma underpinned by lack of legal gender recognition, inability to gender-affirm, discrimination, transphobia, gender maltreatment and violence by other prisoners and prison staff. Despite obligations and recommendations in international human rights’ instruments and standard operating procedures at the prison level, very few countries are able to fully uphold the human rights of and meet the needs of transgender people in prison.

Originality/value

This study is important as it highlights the dearth of knowledge exploring human rights discourses and concerns related to the phenomenon of incarcerated transgender persons. It uniquely focusses on European and domestic law and illustrates the inherent tensions between human rights, sexual orientation and gender identity rights and security considerations regarding transgender issues in prisons. Rights assurances centre on the principles of equality, dignity, freedom of expression, dignified detention and the prohibition of inhumane treatment or punishment.

Details

International Journal of Prisoner Health, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1744-9200

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article

Rosemary Mhlanga-Gunda, Stephanie Kewley, Nehemiah Chivandikwa and Marie-Claire Van Hout

The Sub-Saharan African (SSA) region remains at the epicentre of the HIV epidemic and disproportionately affecting women, girls and prisoners. Women in prison are a…

Abstract

Purpose

The Sub-Saharan African (SSA) region remains at the epicentre of the HIV epidemic and disproportionately affecting women, girls and prisoners. Women in prison are a minority group and their special health needs relating to gender sensitivity, reproductive health, their children and HIV/AIDs are frequently neglected. Our study responded to this need, and aimed to investigate the issue.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative study using focus group discussions and key informant interviews explored the perspectives of women in prison, correctional officers, correctional health professionals and non-governmental organisations around prison conditions and standards of health care while incarcerated in a large female prison in Zimbabwe. Narratives were transcribed and analysed using thematic analysis.

Findings

The three key themes that emerged are as follows: “Sanitation and hygiene in the prison”, “Nutrition for women and children” and “Prison-based health services and health care”. Divergence or agreement across perspectives around adequate standards of sanitation, hygiene, quality and adequacy of food, special diets for those with health conditions, access to health care in prison and the continuum of care across incarceration and community are presented.

Practical implications

Understanding prison environmental cultures which shape correctional staff’s understanding and responsiveness to women in prison, environmental health conditions and access to health care are vital to improve conditions and continuum of care in Zimbabwe.

Originality/value

Policy and technical guidance continues to emphasise the need for research in SSA prisons to garner insight into the experiences of women and their children, with a particular emphasis on the prison environment for them, their health outcomes and health-care continuum. This unique study responded to this need.

Details

International Journal of Prisoner Health, vol. 16 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1744-9200

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article

Marie-Claire Van Hout, Cassie Lungu-Byrne and Jennifer Germain

Many migrants are detained in Europe not because they have committed a crime but because of lack of certainty over their immigration status. Although generally in good…

Abstract

Purpose

Many migrants are detained in Europe not because they have committed a crime but because of lack of certainty over their immigration status. Although generally in good physical health on entry to Europe, migrant detainees have complex health needs, often related to mental health. Very little is known about the current health situation and health care needs of migrants when detained in European immigration detention settings. The review aims to synthesize the qualitative literature available on this issue from the perspectives of staff and migrants.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors undertook a synthesis of extant qualitative literature on migrant health experience and health situation when detained in European immigration detention settings; retrieved as part of a large-scale scoping review. Included records (n = 4) from Sweden and the UK representing both detainee and staff experiences were charted, synthesised and thematically analysed.

Findings

Three themes emerged from the analysis, namely, conditions in immigration detention settings, uncertainties and communication barriers and considerations of migrant detainee health. Conditions were described as inhumane, resembling prison and underpinned by communication difficulties, lack of adequate nutrition and responsive health care.

Practical implications

It is crucial that the experiences underpinning migration are understood to respond to the health needs of migrants, uphold their health rights and to ensure equitable access to health care in immigration detention settings.

Originality/value

There is a dearth of qualitative research in this area because of the difficulty of access to immigration detention settings for migrants. The authors highlight the critical need for further investigation of migrant health needs, so as to inform appropriate staff support and health service responses.

Details

International Journal of Prisoner Health, vol. 16 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1744-9200

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article

Luis Gadama, Chrissie Thakwalakwa, Chimwemwe Mula, Victor Mhango, Chikosa Banda, Stephanie Kewley, Alyson Hillis and Marie-Claire Van Hout

Sub-Saharan African prisons have seen a substantial increase in women prisoners, including those incarcerated with children. There is very little strategic literature…

Abstract

Purpose

Sub-Saharan African prisons have seen a substantial increase in women prisoners, including those incarcerated with children. There is very little strategic literature available on the health situation and needs of women prisoners and their circumstantial children in Malawi. The study aims to explore this issue.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative exploratory study using in-depth key informant interviews with senior correctional stakeholders (commissioner of prison farms, senior correctional management staff, senior health officials and senior officers in charge) (n =5) and focus group discussions (FGD) with women in prison of age between 18 and 45 years (n =23) and two FGD with correctional staff (n =21) was conducted in two prisons in Malawi, Chichiri and Zomba. Narratives were transcribed and analysed using thematic analysis.

Findings

Three key themes emerged and are as follows: “hygiene and sanitary situation across multiple prison levels and subsequent health implications for women”; “nutritional provision and diets of women and children in prison”; and “women’s access to prison-based and external health services”. Divergence or agreement across perspectives around sanitation and disease prevention, adequacy of nutrition for pregnant or breast-feeding women, health status and access to prison-based health care are presented.

Practical implications

Garnering a contemporary understanding of women’s situation and their health-care needs in Malawian prisons can inform policy and correctional health practice change, the adaptation of technical guidance and improve standards for women and their children incarcerated in Malawi.

Originality/value

There is a strong need for continued research to garner insight into the experiences of women prisoners and their children, with a particular emphasis on health situation.

Details

International Journal of Prisoner Health, vol. 16 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1744-9200

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article

Rebekah Brennan and Marie Claire Van Hout

Mephedrone is a synthetic stimulant drug causing entactogenic and hallucinogenic effects. A systematic review of all existing empirical research and literature from…

Abstract

Purpose

Mephedrone is a synthetic stimulant drug causing entactogenic and hallucinogenic effects. A systematic review of all existing empirical research and literature from 2009‐2012 on this new psychoactive drug was conducted. This paper aims to report on that review.

Design/methodology/approach

The review was conducted according to PRISMA guidelines. Electronic databases were utilised using the search terms “mephedrone” and product nomenclature; “Plant Food”, “Feeder”, “Meow Meow”, “Miaow”, “Drone”, “Meph” “Bubbles”, “Charge”, and “MCat”. The search was restricted to publications from 2009‐2012, and produced 702 results. Data were collected by one member of the research team and cross checked by another. A primary screening was carried out to exclude inaccurate search results and drugs other than mephedrone. The results were studied and duplicates removed; 598 results were discarded, with 104 deemed suitable for inclusion.

Findings

The review underscores mephedrone's popularity despite legislative controls. Drug displacement patterns from illicit to licit were observed prior to controls, with blending of mephedrone and other substitute cathinones with street drugs thereafter. User consumptive choices are grounded in availability, perceptions of legality and safety, curiosity and perceived quality of drug outcomes within poly drug taking repertoires. Clinical reports indicate that mephedrone has high abuse potential and toxicity, with several dependence symptoms. Risk assessment, detection, diagnosis and treatment of mephedrone use are difficult due to polydrug use and associated mental health disorders.

Research limitations/implications

The review points to the need for further research into the pharmacology and toxicity of mephedrone in order to better equip clinicians with assessment, diagnosis and treatment strategies to reduce morbidity.

Practical implications

The increasingly diversified new psycho stimulant market where mephedrone is a major player poses unprecedented challenges for drug surveillance, policy, community and clinical practice.

Social implications

Stricter legislative controls including internet vendor responsibility for supply of mephedrone have been suggested, along with raising public awareness on an international level through coordinated efforts.

Originality/value

The last review was published in 2009 by the Psychonaut Webmapping Group. This review brings together a comprehensive new set of data sources as they relate to this drug.

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. 12 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article

Marie Claire Van Hout and Rebekah Brennan

This exploratory research aims to contribute to a greater understanding of the strategic roles and incidental or deliberate sex drug associations relating to an emerging…

Abstract

Purpose

This exploratory research aims to contribute to a greater understanding of the strategic roles and incidental or deliberate sex drug associations relating to an emerging club drug called Mephedrone.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative phenomenological approach was utilized to analyze 22 in depth interviews in order to describe users' perceptions of this drug's impact on their sexual ideation and practises, while under the influence.

Findings

The finds that disinhibition involving compulsive masturbation, homosexual fantasies in heterosexuals, propositioning of strangers, promiscuity, prolonged marathon drug‐sex encounters involving casual/multiple partners and unsafe sexual practices [UAS/UVS] were all common, with gender differences present in terms of perceived connectivity with partners.

Originality/value

The research underscores the need for greater public health awareness and targeted drug‐sex interventions.

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. 11 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article

Anne McDonnell and Marie Van Hout

Opiate use is no longer confined to the greater urban context in Ireland, with scant detoxification services present in rural areas (Carew et al, 2009; National Advisory…

Abstract

Opiate use is no longer confined to the greater urban context in Ireland, with scant detoxification services present in rural areas (Carew et al, 2009; National Advisory Committee on Drugs, 2008). This exploratory research aimed to yield an illustrative account of opiate users' experiences of self‐detoxification by adopting a grounded theory approach (Glaser & Strauss, 1967). Data emerging from 21 in‐depth interviews (n=12 heroin users, n=9 drug service providers: statutory, community and voluntary) were analysed using the constant comparative method. The study generated a substantive theory of self‐detoxification as a subjective process of seeking heroin abstinence. Self‐detoxification emerged as a frequent and reactive or proactive process in collaboration with others (heroin users, family and drug service providers). The study has implications for drug service delivery in rural Ireland in terms of increasing information provision and access to opiate detoxification through the development of low threshold services and community‐based detoxification.

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. 10 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article

Marie Van Hout

Semi‐structured interviews were undertaken with a random sample of 220 students from schools and youth training centres within a rural area of the south eastern region of…

Abstract

Semi‐structured interviews were undertaken with a random sample of 220 students from schools and youth training centres within a rural area of the south eastern region of Ireland. The results show that against the backdrop of rising drug use prevalence, the attitudes towards drug use of both adolescent users and abstainers have become more liberal and ‘normalised’.

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. 9 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article

Marie Van Hout

The challenge for drug and health promotion services is to keep up‐to‐date with the dynamics of drug use patterns and trends both nationally and within certain groups…

Abstract

The challenge for drug and health promotion services is to keep up‐to‐date with the dynamics of drug use patterns and trends both nationally and within certain groups (Kilpatrick, 2000). The traveller community present with lower but similar levels and patterns of drug use than the general population, but are particularly vulnerable to early onset of drug use and problematic substance use relating to their life circumstances. Drug use in the traveller community is facilitated and mediated by a combination of risk and resilience factors, which include lack of education, unemployment, comprised health and poor housing conditions.The research aimed to provide an explorative account of the issue of drug use in the traveller community and consisted of focus groups (N=12) of travellers (N=57) with a gender balance (47/53%) based on self‐selection and volunteerism. The focus groups (4‐5 individuals) were predominantly peer‐accompanied where a traveller guided the facilitation of the traveller focus groups and were also gender based. The focus groups incorporated the following key themes relating to the travellers and drug use; traveller culture and drug use, drug availability and dealing, gender differences in drug use, types of drugs used, reasons for drug use, levels of drug related knowledge, attitude to drug use, drug taking contexts and patterns, problematic drug use in the traveller community, drug awareness, perceptions of risk and experiences of drug treatment and community services.The travellers indicated increased drug availability in recent years. Some members of their community were dealing in and using drugs, as a result of unemployment, lack of education, depression, and increasing contact with the settled community. This has lead to a fragmentation of traveller culture. Traveller men are at heightened risk of substance dependency in terms of increased contact with drugs such as cocaine, speed, hash and ecstasy. In contrast, traveller women reported prescription medication abuse. The travellers described a fear of problematic drug use within their communities coupled with concern in terms of discriminatory experiences with health and drug services, lack of awareness of current service provision and the lack of culturally appropriate drug education material and addiction counseling.

Details

Ethnicity and Inequalities in Health and Social Care, vol. 2 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-0980

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article

Marie Van Hout and Sean Connor

The research aimed to identify ‘(1) current volatile solvent use practices, (2) health beliefs and perceived effects of volatile solvent use, (3) social dynamics of…

Abstract

The research aimed to identify ‘(1) current volatile solvent use practices, (2) health beliefs and perceived effects of volatile solvent use, (3) social dynamics of volatile solvent use, (4) significance of reputation, and (5) barriers to volatile solvent use intervention’ in a sample of Irish adolescents (Carroll et al, 1998, p1; Anderson & Loomis, 2003). Semi‐structured interviews were conducted with 20 adolescents who reported inhaling volatile solvents, during the course of doctoral research (n=1,400) investigating substance misuse among adolescents aged 12 to 18 years in Ireland. Their average age was 13.2 years, and they used a range of substances. Solvent users were found to be most commonly congregated in small peer and sibling groups and one young male also reported using alone. These young people indicated their average age of initiation of inhalant use as 10.3 years and most did not use inhalants after the age of 13 years. This coincided with first‐time alcohol use, at an average age of 12.5 years and experimental use of cannabis in some. All reported some awareness of short‐term medical risks involved in solvent use, and most commented on negative effects, such as headaches, dizziness and vomiting. Teachers, probation and juvenile liaison officers, health promotion and drug education workers, youth workers, social workers, and parents should ‘familiarise themselves with the real world experiences of adolescent volatile solvent users’; in order to develop appropriate and timely drug education interventions (Carroll et al, 1998 p6).

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. 8 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

Keywords

1 – 10 of 15