What were they thinking? A discussion paper on brain and behaviour in relation to the justice system in New Zealand

Acquired brain injury Prisoners Prisons New Zealand
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What were they thinking? (Report) 2.53 MB

This discussion paper presents strong evidence of the over-representation of people in the criminal justice system who have had brain injuries, shedding new light on the impact of such injuries and developmental differences on both victims and offenders. This is the fourth paper in a series of reports.

Key findings

  1. People with brain and behaviour issues are over-represented in the justice system - as both victims and offenders.
  2. The processes of the justice system itself may compound negative outcomes for both victims and offenders with brain and behaviour issues.
  3. Early intervention is important to manage and support children with brain and behaviour issues as soon as they are evident, and to respond to brain injuries as soon as they occur (such as concussion on the rugby field which, until relatively recently, was largely ignored).



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