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Journal cover: The British Journal of Forensic Practice

The British Journal of Forensic Practice

ISSN: 1463-6646
Currently published as: Journal of Forensic Practice

Online from: 1999

Subject Area: Health and Social Care

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Reducing prisoner vulnerability and providing a means of empowerment: evaluating the impact of a Listener Scheme on the Listeners


Document Information:
Title:Reducing prisoner vulnerability and providing a means of empowerment: evaluating the impact of a Listener Scheme on the Listeners
Author(s):Rani Dhaliwal, (UK), Julia Harrower, (UK)
Citation:Rani Dhaliwal, Julia Harrower, (2009) "Reducing prisoner vulnerability and providing a means of empowerment: evaluating the impact of a Listener Scheme on the Listeners", The British Journal of Forensic Practice, Vol. 11 Iss: 3, pp.35 - 43
Keywords:Interpretative phenomenological analysis, Listener scheme, Prevention, Prison, Suicide
Article type:General review
DOI:10.1108/14636646200900021 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Abstract:A 37% rise in suicides among prisoners in 2007 focused attention on the needs of vulnerable prisoners (Ministry of Justice, 2008). Suicide is a common cause of death in prisons partly because there are a large number of very vulnerable individuals in these settings, and also because of a lack of appropriate resources to support them, for example therapeutic interventions such as counselling (Appleby, 2006). A range of suicide prevention strategies has been developed in prisons, one of which is the Listener Scheme, in which volunteer prisoners are trained to provide confidential support to fellow prisoners who are distressed or vulnerable. There is, however, a significant gap in our knowledge of Listeners' own experiences and the impact on them as individuals. Interpretative phenomenological analysis is used in this study to explore the process, and the findings indicate that Listeners experience significant personal growth alongside changing attitudes to self and others.



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