We have called upon the resources of The Arc’s National Center on Criminal Justice and Disability (NCCJD) to assist some families here in Illinois.Whenever we get a call about a person with I/DD caught up in the criminal justice system chills go down my spine. As you may already know, persons with intellectual and other developmental disabilities (I/DD) face unique challenges in the criminal Justice system.
Please see the link below to get an idea of how NCCJD is working in communities to create positive outcomes for people with I/DD involved in the criminal justice system. NCCJD is working to change attitudes and minds about people with I/DD, and to educate our nation’s criminal justice system about disability issues. NCCJD stated they appreciate the efforts of Deb Fornoff, Director of The Arc’s Illinois Life Span Program, for contacting them and allowing NCCJD to be a part of this success story!
Here is a link to the the story: http://blog.thearc.org/2014/11/21/case-dismissed-national-center-criminal-justice-disability-provides-critical-support-bring-justice-illinois/
More on The Arc’s National Center on Criminal Justice and Disability:
The Arc received funding from the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), the U.S. Department of Justice to create The Arc’s National Center on Criminal Justice and Disability (NCCJD). This is the first national effort of its kind to bring together both victim and suspect/offender issues involving people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (or I/DD) under one roof.
NCCJD will serve as a national clearinghouse for information and training on the topic of people with I/DD as victims, witnesses and suspects or offenders of crime. The Arc will partner with a broad spectrum of criminal justice professionals, including those in the law enforcement, legal and disability fields at the national, state and local levels to create safer lives for people with I/DD who become involved in the criminal justice system.
The NCCJD’s products and services include:
Training and technical assistance (including web-based and on-site training)
On-line resource library (including fact sheets, current research, state-by-state database of resources and relevant laws and legislation and directory of expert attorneys, witnesses, forensic interviewers and victim advocates
White papers, literature reviews and reports to promote identification and evaluation support of promising practices
Public awareness via a robust web site housing a national resource library and issue-specific marketing/communication strategies
NCCJD’s goal is to build the capacity of the criminal justice system to respond to gaps in existing services for people with disabilities, focusing on people with I/DD who remain a hidden population within the criminal justice system with little or no access to advocacy supports or services.
Tony Paulauski Executive Director
The Arc of Illinois
20901 S. LaGrange Rd. Suite 209
Frankfort, IL 60423