Title

Non-fatal self-harm in Western Australian prisons: Who, where, when and why

Document Type

Journal Article

Publisher

Sage Publications Ltd

Faculty

Faculty of Computing, Health and Science

School

School of Psychology

RAS ID

173

Comments

Dear, G. E., Thomson, D. M., Hall, G. J., & Howells, K. (2001). Non-fatal self-harm in Western Australian prisons: Who, where, when and why. Australian & New Zealand Journal of Criminology, 34(1), 47-66. Available here

Abstract

One hundred and eight non-fatal self-harm incidents that occurred in the Western Australian prison system over a nine-month period were examined. Descriptive data pertaining to these incidents and the 91 prisoners who enacted them are presented. Self-report data pertaining to motives for self-harming, precipitating factors and level of suicidal intent are also presented. The data are consistent with previous international research. Most incidents involved lacerations of low lethality (although 15% were attempted hangings) and occurred in the prisoner's cell when alone and within a secure prison. Self-report data indicated that prison stressors precipitated most incidents with the motive being to obtain relief from psychological distress. A high level of suicidal intent was reported for one in three incidents. Categories of prisoner at greater risk of self-harm included females, remandees, 18 to 25 year olds, those in special placements (disciplinary, medical, protection) and those in custody for less than one month.

DOI

10.1177/000486580103400104

 
COinS
 

Link to publisher version (DOI)

10.1177/000486580103400104