Criminal Justice Services

Survival Guide

Hafal has published an online guide for people with a mental illness who come into contact with criminal justice agencies.

The guide gives you key tips on your rights and responsibilities – and how you can get the best support.

Read the guide here.


Hafal provides a range of criminal justice services across Wales that aim to support offenders with mental illness to help reduce re-offending.


Appropriate Adult Service

When a vulnerable person is arrested, they require an appropriate adult to support them during their time in custody. Hafal provide an appropriate adult service to South Wales, Dyfed Powys, Gwent and North Wales Police. The service operates 24/7, 365 days per year.

Appropriate adults support, advise and assist the detainee when they are in custody. They ensure that the police act fairly and respect the rights of the detainee. Appropriate adults help communication between the detainee, the police and others, but do not give legal advice.

Our appropriate adults work with people with a range of vulnerabilities:

  • Mental illness
  • Learning difficulties
  • Learning disabilities
  • Autistic Spectrum Disorder
  • 17 year olds (Hafal does not provide appropriate adults to people under 17)
  • People who are vulnerable due to the nature of the offence.

Hafal also provide appropriate adults for external organisations, including Department for Work and Pensions investigations and victim and witness interviews. If you would like to request an appropriate adult, email

Watch the HafalTV report on our appropriate adult service below.

To find out more information or to apply to become an appropriate adult, click here.

‘Out of the Blue’ Service

‘Out of the Blue’ is a Big Lottery funded service that provides a mental health intervention for offenders receiving community sentences at court in the South Wales Police authority area. Low level, non-violent offenders will be referred to the service, as opposed to receiving a custodial sentence.

‘Out of the Blue’ Link Officers provide a holistic package of support to reduce offending and work towards recovery and integration with the community.

Hafal Criminal Justice staff at the launch of our ‘Access to Justice’ Service in June 2015.

Hafal Criminal Justice staff at the launch of our ‘Access to Justice’ Service in June 2015.

‘Access to Justice’ Service

Comic Relief fund Hafal’s ‘Access to Justice’ Service. Hafal’s Access to Justice Champion provides a single point of contact for criminal justice agencies who are managing offenders or people at risk of offending.The Champion advises mentally vulnerable individuals and their families and represents them at national criminal justice and mental health planning forums.

Women’s Prison Link Service

Hafal’s Women’s Prison Link Service is funded by The Waterloo Foundation. The Service funds a team of volunteers to provide support to women from Wales who are serving sentences in HMPs Eastwood Park and Styal.

More information:

Click here to read the Mental Health Wales Criminal Justice journal and find out some of the issues in the criminal justice system.

Contact us if you would like more information about any of our criminal justice services.


CLICK BELOW to watch a video about our Big Lottery-funded Criminal Justice Link services.