This article contains much of what we discussed in our Libertas Lecture on 22 April 2021 which followed the theme of the A.A. Milne quote:

“You can’t stay in your corner of the forest waiting for others to come to you; you have to go to them sometimes”.

In criminal proceedings, legal professionals have to consider, recognise and respond to a range of issues that regularly confront medical professionals. These include adverse mental health; equality, and inclusion issues; poverty; evidence of bullying; parental substance misuse (alcohol and/or drug use); domestic (inter-partner) violence; and child abuse. Add to this Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs) where the display of challenging behaviour, particularly by children and within the criminal justice system means we have a forest of problems with no apparent clearing.

This short article particularly considers accused persons in contact with the criminal justice system who may have some or all of these issues along with other disabilities.

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