Government of Yukon

November 23, 2017

Final report of the FASD prevalence study of corrections population released

The final report of a three-year research study into Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) prevalence in Yukon’s corrections population was released today.

The results identified that 17.5 per cent of study participants were given a diagnosis of FASD. The report also highlights significant rates of cognitive impairment, addiction and mental health difficulties.

The research design included services to ensure that participants were supported during and after the study and has contributed to the development of adult diagnostic services and collaborative relationships.

The study was led by Dr. Kaitlyn McLachlan, assistant professor in clinical psychology at the University of Guelph, in partnership with the Yukon Department of Justice and the BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute and the University of British Columbia. The research, supported by Yukon First Nations Health and Social Development Commission, was guided by a steering committee of community partners, government representatives and non-governmental organizations.


“On behalf of the Department of Justice, I thank all of the partners and organizations for their guidance and assistance in carrying out this very important research. We are all grateful to the study participants and their families, whose commitment and openness made this research possible. The results of the study will be used to improve planning and service delivery for individuals with FASD who come into contact with the justice system.”

–Minister of Justice Tracy-Anne McPhee

Quick facts

  • Any consumption of alcohol can put the developing fetus at risk of FASD.
  • A diagnosis of FASD can encompass a range of cognitive, emotional, and physical difficulties caused when a developing fetus is exposed to alcohol.
  • The study’s findings provided new support for previously identified concerns about the overrepresentation and vulnerability of justice-involved adults with FASD. The research study team included local physicians, psychologists and researchers.

Learn more: FASD Study: Prevalence in Corrections


Sunny Patch
Cabinet Communications

Catherine Young
Communications, Department of Justice

News Release #17-253