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Experts have gathered to discuss ways to improve the criminal justice services provided to people with learning disabilities and mental health conditions in Gloucestershire.

A conference, held at Police Headquarters, in Waterwells, Quedgeley, was organised by the county’s Learning Disabilities and Criminal Justice (LDCJ) Group.

It was attended by Lord Bradley, whose landmark report in 2009 called for big improvements in the criminal justice system nationally.

The Gloucestershire LDCJ group was set up following his report and Lord Bradley was invited to hear how his recommendations have been enacted, and what further improvements are being made.

"I was delighted to be invited and have been immensely impressed with the partnership work being undertaken in Gloucestershire to support people with learning disabilities who may find themselves in contact with the criminal justice system," Lord Bradley said.

"It is invaluable work and I am sure it will go from strength to strength."

Those who attended and spoke at the conference were drawn from a variety of agencies including ²gether NHS Foundation Trust, Gloucestershire Constabulary, the Independence Trust, Guideposts UK, Siarad Da, the Resource Group, Gloucestershire Youth Support Team and Bristol, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Wiltshire Community Rehabilitation Company.

LDCJ group Chairman Jonathan Thomas, of ²gether, said the day had been a great success.

"This is our third annual conference and to have Lord Bradley in attendance, when the group owes its existence to his report, was a great honour," Jonathan said.

"We continue to carry out a huge amount of work locally to improve services for people with learning disabilities – whether they are victims or perpetrators of crime or affected by crime and justice in other ways."

For more information on the Gloucestershire Learning Disability and Criminal Justice Group visit www.²gether.nhs.uk/ldcj

 

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