FASD and Justice: Academic articles relevant to Aotearoa


Best Practices for Justice: practitioner views on understanding and helping youth living with FASD

Anita Gibbs, University of Otago, Aotearoa New Zealand (2022)

International studies and New Zealand publications note that care groups, as well as youth and adult justice populations, have high rates of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) and other neuro-disabilities, alongside mental health problems and adverse childhood experiences. This research explores justice practitioner views of helping young people living with FASD, especially when they come into contact with the youth justice system in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Improving treatment and outcomes for young people with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder in the youth justice system: A social work-led response and practice framework.

Oatley V. and Gibbs, A. (2020) Aotearoa New Zealand Social Work 32(2) 5-16.

Young people with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) in Aotearoa New Zealand are both primed for, and hindered within the youth justice (YJ) system. This research provides a fresh perspective on how social workers can take a lead role in ensuring young people with FASD receive neurodevelopmentally appropriate interventions both within the YJ system 


• A chapter in the Aotearoa Handbook of Criminology (2021) Auckland University Press by Anita Gibbs entitled 'Neurodisability and criminal justice: Time for a radical rethink' is essential reading for those within the criminal justice system.


• Views from the Bench: Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder in the Courtroom
In N Novick Brown (ed), Evaluating Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders in the Forensic Context 

In this book chapter Judge FitzGerald, a District and Youth court judge in Auckland (and our FASD-CAN patron), addresses FASD and the law in New Zealand. He identifies low levels of awareness, absence of prevalence studies, lack of diagnostic capacity and barriers to essential services and supports as the major features regarding FASD in the New Zealand justice context.  


Psychological Assessment for Juvenile Courts – Haner D., McGinn V., Harris K. (2021)
In: Novick Brown N. (eds) Evaluating Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders in the Forensic Context.
Springer, Cham

In this chapter Dr Valerie McGinn and two Canadian psychologists address the identification of offenders with FASD and education of  the courts in order to reduce involvement of youths with FASD, both as perpetrators of crime and as victims. Its chapter describes the processes used in Canada and New Zealand to evaluate young people who have committed crimes that were influenced by the neurodevelopmental deficits associated with FASD.