The Department of Health and Social Care have consulted on when mandatory training on learning disabilities and autism is needed for health care staff. The MA produced a response, raising specific points about what the expected provision should be for staff in a criminal justice setting.
We were concerned that staff in a criminal justice setting were provisionally designated to a Tier that would not require mandatory face-to-face training, as they would not be classified as working with people with either learning disabilities or autism regularly. We pointed out that staff in a criminal justice setting were in unique positions, as they were required to assess and treat everyone without necessarily being able to divert people to specialist staff. For example, in a custodial setting, an individual will usually have to be treated for any healthcare issue while in custody, rather than being sent to see a specialist outside custody. We also proposed that there should be national standards setting the training requirement for health care staff embedded in police or prison settings, rather than allowing local employers to decide levels of training. It is important that there is consistency so that anyone in contact with the criminal justice system can expect the same standard of care, regardless of any vulnerabilities.