ASD and the Criminal Justice System: Preventing Contact, Improving Outcomes
Autism is not synonymous with dangerousness, in fact, people with autism are much more likely to be the victims of a crime than they are the perpetrators. When people with autism do come into contact with the juvenile and criminal justice system it is important to view the offense through the lens of autism. Preventing offenses and improving school and community safety has become a priority for many jurisdictions. Cross-System approaches include law enforcement, school-based providers, outside mental health professionals and service providers to assess risk, determine appropriate countermeasures, and connect vulnerable youth and adults to pro-social support and services before they engage in criminal activity. This presentation will focus on the vulnerabilities of people with autism once they enter the criminal justice system, cross systems approaches to prevent contact and improve outcomes and provide a first person account from a person who is neurodiverse and their experiences with first responders.