Author’s Note:

When I first came aboard this team in fall of 2021, our original initiative’s goal was to screen for TBIs in North Carolina prison facilities. We soon realized that while the need is certainly there, there is much to do in the system before we can get to that level. In determining what area of the legal system would best suit our initiative, we looked at our nation’s history in this sector. Choosing our population was carefully crafted as we wanted to ensure the individuals, we would be serving are folks that would most benefit from receiving screenings and subsequent supportive services. The mission of the Traumatic Brain Injury Justice Initiative continues to be to build an innovative program that addresses safety, education, training, services, and accommodation needs for individuals with brain injuries in the criminal legal system. This project is designed as a multi-step initiative, first pointed at the identification of TBI in legal-involved veterans in the North Carolina Veteran Treatment Courts and connecting them with educational materials for the individuals and their families, complemented with staff training and the development of community re-entry resources.

The Traumatic Brain Injury Justice Initiative branched out into this Justice Database that holds our nation’s history of legal-related brain injury screenings and supportive services. While we understand this list is not exhaustive, this is a start. We intend to continue our research for more studies and reports and conduct outreach to help grow this database. This database is intended for folks who want to learn more about legal-related brain injury screenings, supportive services and how they can potentially best implement a program in their respective area. I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to the leadership at the National Association of State Head Injury Administrators (NASHIA), each respective states’ Brain Injury Association / Alliance Director and Brain Injury Leads for speaking with me and sharing information to help build this database. Their participation and sharing of their states’ work was critical in moving this database forward. An additional acknowledgement is vital to those who helped organize this data and conduct outreach: Adam Shaw and Amadi Brown. Finally, thank you to Susan Pollitt and the rest of the DRNC team for believing strongly in this project and aiding to move it forward to publication.

If your state has any current or future programs for legal-related brain injury screenings and supportive services, please submit those plans below so we can add them to the database. For more information on our initiative or general questions on our database please contact me at I look forward to hearing from you.

Desireé Gorbea-Finalet