April 16th, 2016 The Current on CBC radio presented an episode on Bill C-235 proposed by Liberal MP Larry Bagnell introduced in January of this year. Bill C-235 targets those affected by fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) that are seemingly caught in the “revolving door” of the criminal justice system in Canada. Offenders involved in the Canadian criminal justice system are often a forgotten demographic of individuals with limited access to effective FASD specific interventions and community transitional programs. 

For more information on Bill C-235 or to listen to the full CBC radio program on this topic please click the above links.

In order to better support those affected by FASD in the Canadian criminal justice system Bill C-235 is proposing the following changes in legislation:

  • Access to assessments for individuals suspected of having FASD

  • Allowing assessment to inform sentencing of these offenders

  • Reintegration plan for community transitions

The CBC radio episode features an interview with Russ Hilsher who has FASD and is a spokesperson for Initiatives for Just communities and discusses his personal experience in the Canadian criminal justice system and the need for programs and services for individuals with FASD involved in this system. As well as discussions on the proposed Bill C-235  with Jonathan Rudin, program director of Aboriginal Legal services and chair of FASD Justice Committee and Dan Brodsky, criminal defense lawyer with the Association in the Defense of the Wrongly Convicted

CG paper

 

Members of the iNAT (creators of this blog), and collaborators recently published new research about caregiver needs and stress for those caring for individuals with FASD.

Based on an online survey, the research team found that caregivers reported many needs and concerns and high levels of stress, and that those caring for adolescents and adults with FASD tended to report more concerns and needs than those caring for children. Also, those with lower income reported higher levels of stress and more needs and concerns.

Thank you to anyone who came across the survey on this blog and took the time to fill it out. The link below provides free access to the paper until May 26, 2016, where you can read about the study and findings in detail.

Click here to read the paper.

The findings of this paper highlight the importance of adequate supports for individuals with FASD and their families. To learn more about FASD and possible ways to get help, visit the iNAT’s KnowFASD page. check out the wiki feature for support resources on many of the issues surrounding FASD, including caregiver needs.

NDN FASD and Stigma
The FASD Research Program at NeuroDevNet has just completed another new video: “FASD & Stigma: Damaged Angels Can Fly” featuring Colette Philcox and her mother, Bonnie Buxton.

 

NDN Video

NeuroDevNet, a research network dedicated to understanding brain development and to helping children and their families overcome the challenges of neurodevelopmental disorders, has recently created a video on the stigma surrounding drinking during pregnancy, exploring some of the reasons a woman may drink while pregnant.

adultAdolescent

 

Conference agenda and registration now available for the 7th National Biennial Conference on Adolescents and Adults with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD)!

Research on FASD tends to focus on childhood, with a relatively small body of literature on the effects of FASD later in life. Given that FASD is a lifelong condition, it is essential that research investigate the effects of these diagnoses throughout the lifespan- including adolescence and adulthood- which is exactly what this conference focuses on! You can even check out a presentation by iNAT members (creators of this blog) about findings from our research on caregiver needs, partnered with the University of Alberta (the presentation is titled “Supporting Adolescents and Adults with FASD: The Impact on Caregivers”).

The conference will take place April 6-9, 2016 in Vancouver, BC.

For more information, check out the links below:

Conference Website

Conference Brochure outlining program/presentations and general information

Register

cogmed

Research participation opportunity for families in Edmonton with children with FASD  or prenatal alcohol exposure age 5-13. Typically developing children are also invited to participate!

The study involves a memory training program aimed at improving your child’s working memory. The program can be completed on your own computer at home. Please click on the image above to learn more.

news

The latest edition of the iNAT FASD Intervention Newsletter is now available!

This season’s newsletter includes a spotlight on an Ontario school with an FASD-specific program, information about Dr. Michelle Stewart, (CanFASD’s Strategic Lead for Justice Interventions), and a sneak peak of findings from our research examining caregiver needs and stress.

You can read a copy of the newsletter here and subscribe to receive future editions.

Source: Register Now for the December 04, 2015 FASD Webcast

Great blog post from Edmonton Fetal Alcohol Network:

 

Northern Ontario pilot project aims to get MedicAlert bracelets for people with FASD

Image source: http://www.crisisprevention.com/Blog/September-2015/FASD

 

CPI, an international organization focusing on safe behaviour management, recently posted an article written by behavioural therapist Chris Arnold. Arnold Describes key issues faced by individuals with FASD and  how to best support these individuals.

It is a great read -worth checking out if you are looking to learn a little bit more about what life is like for a person with FASD and how we can help them with daily struggles.

Arnold covers some key issues faced by individuals with FASD such as anxiety, the invisibility of the disability, the need for ongoing re-learning, and trouble with: structure, sequences, verbal instructions, understanding cause and effect, and understanding abstracts and generalizations. He discusses how we may misunderstand many of these issues and the implications our misunderstanding may have, as well as specific strategies to support people with FASD.

Click here to read the article

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