MHDCD Project

8. Qualitative Study

8.1 Method

The theoretical framework set out in section 3 of this report has infused and guided the project’s research process. In particular, it provides a touchstone for the protocols and practices used in the qualitative phase, and its objectives of developing an Indigenous-informed perspective on the nature and meaning of ‘disability’ and ‘offending’ and on the identification, assessment, diagnosis and treatment of mental health disorders and support and resources for people with cognitive disability. This gives rise to a conceptual model and framework for research across criminal justice and human service systems to address duty of care and community safety issues, and the human rights of Indigenous persons with MHDCD.

The IAMHDCD Project has been committed to practising inclusion of and respect for Indigenous peoples and privileging Indigenous voices and knowledge in conducting this study. This involves respecting Indigenous knowledge systems and processes; recognising the diversity and uniqueness of people as individuals; respecting and preserving the intellectual and cultural physical and knowledge property rights of Indigenous peoples and communities; and involving Indigenous researchers, individuals, organisations and communities in research as primary collaborators. The lived experiences of Indigenous peoples are the explicit focus of this strand of the Project and therefore engagement with Indigenous individuals, organisations and communities has been the utmost priority throughout the qualitative study.


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