Report on self-injurious behaviour in the Kingston prison for women

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Jan Heney
Correctional Services of Canada
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Ottawa, ON

Discusses a study undertaken at the Kingston Prison for Women about developing a therapeutic programme for women who self-injure. Interviews with prisoners security staff personnel about injury response, injury reduction and suicide identification reveals that self-injury may best be reduced by considering it a sign of emotional distress rather than a security issue, and by shifting the responsibility for its reduction from security to counselling personnel. Concludes with recommendations for the development of a programme to train prisoners as peer counsellors.