MHDCD Project

About our research:

The over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples (Indigenous Australians) with mental health disorders and cognitive disabilities (MHDCD) in Australian criminal justice systems (CJS) is a matter of utmost importance to Government, policy makers, Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.
The IAMHDCD Project brings an Indigenous informed mixed method research approach to the study of this issue. Qualitative interviews will afford new and in depth understandings from an Indigenous perspective and school education and welfare data will be merged with our existing rich dataset (MHDCD Project Dataset). The MHDCD dataset comprises data on 2,731 persons who have been in prison from Police, Corrections, Justice Health and other health areas, Courts (BOSCAR), Juvenile Justice, Legal Aid, Disability, Housing and Community Services to allow a whole of life picture of institutional involvement. The dataset will be used to investigate the pathways Indigenous Australians with MHDCD take into, around and through the Human Service (HS) and CJS and their experiences of the systems and system interactions. IAMHDCD Project →

A predictable and preventable path: IAMHDCD Report

2 November 2015.

IAMHDCD Report October 2015Report Authors: Eileen Baldry, Ruth McCausland, Leanne Dowse, Elizabeth McEntyre

Project Investigators: Eileen Baldry, Leanne Dowse, Julian Trollor, Patrick Dodson, Devon Indig

Project Researchers:  Peta MacGillivray, Elizabeth McEntyre, Ruth McCausland, Han Xu, Julian Trofimovs


  • 'People with mental health disorders and cognitive impairment in the criminal justice system: Cost-benefit analysis of early support and diversion' by Ruth McCausland, Eileen Baldry, Sarah Johnson and Anna Cohen Report
  • 'The lifecourse institutional costs of homelessness for vulnerable groups' report by Eileen Baldry, Leanne Dowse, Ruth McCausland and Melissa Clarence Report 

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