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Improving therapeutic outcomes for defendants : measuring the therapeutic contributions of legal actors

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thesis
posted on 2024-02-09, 03:33 authored by Graham ColemanGraham Coleman

The question of how to improve therapeutic outcomes for defendants with mental health concerns moving through criminal court systems is an enduring dilemma. Unfortunately, research suggests that mainstream criminal court experiences can themselves be criminogenic and the question becomes even more complex when dealing with individuals experiencing mental illness, social disadvantage, drug addiction, or other endemic social problems.


This thesis examines the possible methods of action within the court system to improve outcomes for the above identified group of defendants, firstly by reviewing the possibilities offered by legal reform, diversion to mental health and other services, and mainstreaming therapeutic jurisprudence principles to the magistrates criminal courts. After finding limitations to all in terms of the likelihood of non-optimal therapeutic outcomes, the thesis then focusses on how to utilise therapeutic jurisprudence principles to change the qualitative nature of court experiences so as to render them a powerful venue for therapeutic change themselves. This goal is realized by the development of a behavioural description of desirable magistrate behaviours when interacting with a defendant within a courtroom so as to have the best chance of facilitating therapeutic change for a defendant. This behavioural description is the first evidence-based description of its kind, derived from the literature on common denominators of therapeutic change, procedural justice and legitimacy of justice, and founded in ‘court craft’ descriptions of therapeutic jurisprudence.

History

Sub-type

  • PhD Thesis

Pagination

xiv, 231 pages

Department/School

School of Law.

Publisher

University of Tasmania

Event title

Graduation

Date of Event (Start Date)

2021-10-29

Rights statement

Copyright 2021 the author. Chapter 2 appears to be, in part, the equivalent of an accepted manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Psychiatry, psychology and law on 6 June 2017, available at: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/13218719.2017.1327305 Another portion of chapter 2 appears to be the equivalent of a pre-print version of an article published as: Waterworth, R., 2021. The feasibility of mainstreaming therapeutic jurisprudence within the South-East Queensland magistrate's courts in 2021, 31, Journal of judicial administration, 71. Chapter 3 appears to be, in part, the equivalent of an accepted manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Psychiatry, psychology and law on 2 July 2018, available at: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/13218719.2018.1483273 Chapter 4 includes a reproduction of a published article: Waterworth, R., 2019. Measuring legal actor contributions in court: judges' roles, Therapeutic alliance and therapeutic change 28(4) Journal of judicial administration, 207. Page 118 of the thesis included permission from the publisher to include it in the thesis. Chapter 2 appears to be, in part, the equivalent of a post-print, or in press version of an article published as: Waterworth, R., 2021. Development of a measurement tool for courtroom legal actor contributions: a Delphi study consulting the experts, Journal of judicial dministration, 31 Journal of judicial administration 17.

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