Safe Pathways: supporting dementia in the justice system is a collaborative community approach, to support and guide individuals with dementia and their care partners away from and/or through the Guelph and Wellington County Judicial System while maintaining dignity and respect.
This project is working to reduce the likelihood that seniors* with dementia will enter the criminal justice system due to behaviours that may cause harm and result in a criminal offence. A criminal offence can range from less serious to more serious in nature. The overall intent of the project is to improve the quality of life for individuals with dementia and their care partners. To reach these goals, the project will consist of:
1. developing an education and awareness initiative for police services, care partners, health care providers, and the community that will identify the risk factors and the legal procedures.
2. working with police services, the justice system, health care providers, and key stakeholders to explore best practices and develop a Safe Pathway response program for persons with dementia (with a focus on persons with frontal lobe dementia) who may be at risk of entering the criminal justice system.
3. creating a support system for those persons with dementia and their care partners who have already entered the judicial system.
*For the purpose of this project a senior is defined as an individual 50 years of age or older.