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Headway to deliver brain injury training to prisons and probation staff

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The programme will take on a ‘train the trainer’ format, with additional information and tools being provided to all appropriate officers and staff, the brain injury charity has confirmed.

The contract does not include training provision for police services, however.

Headway has previously delivered training to the Metropolitan Police and Surrey Police services, and says it is working to roll similar training out to other police services across the UK.

Last year the charity delivered training to Surrey Police’s custody staff to help them better identify and support people with brain injuries coming into custody.

Progress with the new NHS England contract has been delayed due to Covid-19, but the charity is currently working with various stakeholders to get the programme off the ground, and considering new public health guidelines in light of the pandemic.

There is also some funding allocated for Headway to produce and issue Brain Injury ID Cards to prison leavers, which are designed to help police officers and staff identify people with brain injury so they can receive appropriate support.

Peter McCabe, Headway’s chief executive, said: “We are pleased to be working with our partners, NHS England, to deliver brain injury awareness training using a train the trainer format to reach prison and probation staff in England.

“The training forms part of our wider Justice Project and complements the training we have provided to police forces across the UK, as well as prosecutors, appropriate adults, liaison and diversion services and other agencies within the criminal justice system.

Research demonstrates a high prevalence of brain injury within the criminal justice system. But through Headway’s Justice Project, we are working to improve understanding of brain injury to ensure survivors are identified and provided with appropriate support.

“By providing prisoners with access to Headway Brain Injury Identity Cards on their release, we will ensure that survivors will be easier to identify should they have further contact with the criminal justice system. We want key decision makers to provide appropriate support and take the effects of brain injury into account in reaching their conclusions.”

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