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Report on B.C. prolific offenders recommends focus on mental health, addictions supports – Burns Lake Lakes District News

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Report on B.C. prolific offenders recommends focus on mental health, addictions supports

Authors suggest specialized crisis response and long-term support units for offenders


The authors of a government-commissioned report into prolific offenders in B.C. are calling for a far greater focus on mental health and substance use resources.

Retired police chief Doug LePard and Simon Fraser University criminologist Amanda Butler released the executive summary and recommendations of their investigation on Wednesday (Sept. 21). The two were tasked by the province in May with exploring solutions to repeat offenders – most often individuals who are charged and then released with conditions, only to commit crimes again.

In their four months of consultations and research, LePard and Butler said it became clear to them that there needs to be an overall investment in mental health and long-term care to reduce individual’s interactions with the justice system.

They are recommending that the province continues to move toward more civilian-led mental health crisis response teams, as an alternative to police.

The authors also suggest the creation of three different types of units: crisis response and stabilization units where current, past or possible future offenders can access high-quality mental health and substance use care, either by walk-in or by transportation by ambulance, fire or police; low secure units for people who are at a serious risk of violence and require long-term supports; and, custom-built units or facilities for incarcerated people with chronic or acute mental health needs.

More to come.


@janeskrypnek
jane.skrypnek@blackpress.ca

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Report on B.C. prolific offenders recommends focus on mental health, addictions supports – Burns Lake Lakes District News Source link Report on B.C. prolific offenders recommends focus on mental health, addictions supports – Burns Lake Lakes District News

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