Strengthening connections among criminal justice agencies, behavioral health organizations, and the community to improve wellbeing for people with mental health conditions or co-occurring substance use disorders.

Improving Outcomes for People in Contact with the Criminal Justice System Who Have Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities

When people with intellectual or developmental disabilities (IDD) encounter or are involved in the criminal justice system, they often experience a system that is unable to address their unique needs and face misconceptions about their abilities. However, there are ways to help improve outcomes for people with IDD and reduce their chances of re-encountering the criminal justice system. This brief offers important steps that criminal justice administrators can take to better identify and respond to the needs of people with IDD. Photo credit: Photo by Christina Morillo

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Authors

Profile image of Jazmone Wilkerson

Jazmone Wilkerson

Project Manager, Behavioral Health

[email protected]

Dr. Jazmone Wilkerson provides project support and technical assistance (TA) for the Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program. Previously, Jazmone worked as adjunct faculty at Antioch University in its Clinical Mental Health Counseling (CMHC) Program and as a legislative assistant for the DC Council Committee of the Judiciary. Jazmone has advocated and provided TA on a range of issues, including the school-to-prison pipeline, educational equity, and behavioral health. Jazmone earned a BA/BS from Purdue University, a JD from the University of the District of Columbia, an MA in CMHC from Argosy University, and a PhD in counselor education and supervision from Lindsey Wilson College.

Profile image of Felicia Lopez Wright

Felicia Lopez Wright

Senior Policy Analyst, Behavioral Health

[email protected]

Felicia Lopez Wright provides behavioral health technical assistance to Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program grantees with projects focused on implementing or enhancing diversion, pretrial, juvenile justice, mental health courts, jails, and/or reentry programming. Additionally, she contributes to various behavioral health-criminal justice projects, such as gender-responsive services for justice-involved women and crisis system enhancements. Felicia is a licensed clinical social worker with over a decade of combined experience providing mental health therapy to demographically diverse populations in various care settings, special education case management in a public school district, and short-term counseling at a community court program. She earned a BA in psychology from The College of New Jersey and an MSW from Rutgers University.

Profile image of Leigh Ann Davis

Leigh Ann Davis

Leigh Ann Davis is senior director of Criminal Justice Initiatives at The Arc of the United States and directs The Arc’s National Center on Criminal Justice and Disability® (NCCJD). With 26 years of experience working at the intersection of intellectual and developmental disability (IDD) and criminal justice, her mission is to build stronger lines of open communication and understanding between these two worlds. She worked with The Arc to secure funding to create NCCJD®, the first national center in the U.S. to focus on addressing both victim and defendant issues involving people with IDD and oversaw the development of NCCJD’s training program: Pathways to Justice®. Ms. Davis holds a Master of Science in Social Work and a Master of Public Administration from the University of Texas at Arlington.

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