A programme for alcohol related violence with offenders with intellectual disability

William R. Lindsay, Kerry Joanne Smith, Samantha Tinsley, Jane Macer, Sandra Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Purpose – Although studies suggest alcohol abuse is not the major problem among offenders and others with intellectual disabilities (ID), it is still a significant problem. There are also suggestions that alcohol may have a more serious effect on those with ID. The purpose of this paper is to describe a treatment for alcohol-related difficulties designed for people with ID.
Design/methodology/approach – A programme for alcohol-related problems is described and four case studies are presented to illustrate the sessions and review the way in which people with ID have responded to the methods. The cases have a mixture of alcohol-related problems including anger, anxiety, social withdrawal and depression. The alcohol programme is coordinated with a range of person centred interventions for specific difficulties.
Findings – All cases responded to the programme positively. Two cases showed reductions in anger, two reported reductions in anxiety and one reported reductions in depression. All cases increased their alcohol knowledge considerably.
Research limitations/implications – The programme seems promising in its approach to alcohol-related difficulties. It is noted that alcohol education alone is likely to improve participants’ wellbeing in the absence of coordinated intervention for other relevant personal difficulties. A controlled treatment trial for effectiveness is clearly required.
Originality/value – The paper describes a programme for alcohol-related problems and may be the first such programme that has contained pilot evaluation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-119
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Intellectual Disabilities and Offending Behaviour
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Intellectual disability
  • Offenders
  • Treatment
  • Violence
  • Alcohol abuse
  • Emotional problems


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