Justice-involved populations are at increased risk of compromised social and cultural determinants of health, resulting in them having reduced control over their health and wellbeing. Our Banksia Hill Detention Centre (BHDC) study investigated the prevalence of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) and neurodevelopmental difficulties among sentenced youth in Western Australia. Using comprehensive, multidisciplinary clinical assessments, we identified that 89% of young people had a neurodevelopmental impairment in the severe range, and 36% had FASD. Moreover, through qualitative exploration involving participants and their circles of care, and investigation of workforce capabilities and training needs, we identified multiple system failures in supporting young people’s health and wellbeing. Since completion of our study there have been ongoing changes to practice, policy and legislation across multiple sectors. To influence a comprehensive approach to justice health, we are now drawing on health promotion frameworks to help map these impacts and the considerable interest generated. All too often, translation of research is limited and the gap between research and policy and practice remains wide. Approaches that consider research translation at multiple levels are needed to move beyond simply documenting vulnerabilities of justice-involved populations, to undertaking coordinated actions that enable health and wellbeing, nurture desistance and ultimately sustain health and community safety. This presentation will provide an overview of our study and its translation through the application of the Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion, in the hope of assisting other justice health researchers and practitioners to consider how they can plan for impact in their own work.
Dr Hayley Passmore has qualifications in Criminology and Psychology, and previous experience working with mothers in prison, and with vulnerable children and families across Western Australia. In 2019, Hayley completed her PhD at the Telethon Kids Institute and The University of Western Australia Medical School (Paediatrics), focusing on the workforce development component of the first Australian study to investigate the prevalence of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) among youth in detention. Hayley was a Finalist in the 2019 WA Premier’s Science Awards Student Scientist of the Year category. Hayley currently works in the Alcohol, Pregnancy and FASD research group at the Telethon Kids Institute and the FASD Research Australia Centre of Research Excellence.