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What facilities are available for disabled detainees?

All reasonable adjustments should be made to accommodate the additional needs of a disabled person within custody suites and to comply with the Act. This may include additional access requirements that they may have. The needs of all custody users must be considered to ensure compliance and adjustments should not impact upon the overall safety and security of the custody suite. Most of West Mercia's custody suites have ramp access and wide doors to accommodate wheelchair users. A wheel chair is also available.

A wide range of disabilities, conditions and illnesses are classed as physical impairments or mental impairments.  Detainees do not have to declare a disability; however, staff should be mindful of the possibility and react accordingly.

If staff are uncertain of the needs of a detainee, it is appropriate to ask about any additional needs or requirements. Advice may be available from family or friends but only if the detainee consents to this communication. If in doubt the custody staff will contact the health care professional for advice or request their attendance. Any risks and the associated control measure will be recorded in the custody record

PACE Code C places a legal responsibility on the custody officer to ensure that interpreting support is provided for blind, deaf or otherwise vulnerable detainees who may have difficulty understanding procedures or completing documentation.

Using a suitably qualified interpreter (eg, British Sign Language interpreter) may facilitate communication with people who appear to be deaf, or if there is doubt about their ability to hear. A hearing loop is available at the booking in desk to facilitate the booking in process

Detainees with dyslexia may find reading and understanding documents difficult and may need to have the information communicated verbally.

If a person is blind, seriously visually impaired or unable to read for other reasons, an independent person must be available to help check any documentation regarding the detainee. The custody sergeant will assess whether it is appropriate for spectacles to be retained on an individual basis.

An appropriate adult must be considered for any one of these disabilities.