The Centre for Mental Health (UK) has released a report examining the scale and consequences of traumatic brain injury (TBI).
The report argues that there is a causal link between TBI and crime and offending. It highlights the prevalence of head injuries among the offending population, suggesting that head injuries may in fact contribute to criminal behaviour.
As a result, TBI may therefore be indirectly responsible for incurring significant expenses to the UK’s criminal justice system, based on how much it costs to imprison an offender. The report provides economic estimates of these costs, demonstrating the financial scale of this issue.
The Centre explains the economic benefits of early intervention at adolescence for those with head injuries. A substantial amount of money can be saved by helping to ensure that these children never come into contact with the criminal justice system through early and effective treatment.
The report raises important concerns that ought to be considered by policymakers in Ireland. It highlights how criminal behaviour may be influenced by a number of factors. A better understanding of these factors and consequently a more considered approach is necessary in order to provide a better response to crime.
The report is available to read here.