August 21, 2017


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Treat, don't jail, FASD kids: poll

Most Manitobans support expansions of programs


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The questions


I'd like to read you a list of statements that may or may not describe your understanding of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. For each statement I read, tell me if you agree or disagree by using a five-point scale. Here, a one means you strongly disagree and a five means you strongly agree. If you are not sure or do not know, just say so.


People with FASD are more likely to commit crimes


Strongly agree -- 20 per cent

Moderately agree -- 15 per cent

Moderately disagree -- 17 per cent

Strongly disagree -- 15 per cent

Neutral/don't know -- 33 per cent


Dealing with the problem of FASD would directly reduce our crime rate


Strongly agree -- 23 per cent

Moderately agree -- 16 per cent

Moderately disagree -- 14 per cent

Strongly disagree -- 13 per cent

Neutral/don't know -- 34 per cent

-- Poll was conducted by Probe Research using a random telephone sample of 1,002 Manitobans between Sept. 16 and Sept. 30, 2010. It is considered accurate within 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

The followup


Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder is a birth defect caused when a woman consumes alcohol while pregnant. Some of the symptoms of FASD include impulsive behaviour and the inability of those with the affliction to understand the consequences of their actions. Today in Manitoba, there's a court program for young offenders who have been diagnosed with FASD, This program holds offenders responsible for their actions, but the effects of FASD are taken into account before and after an offender is sentenced and these individuals are given appropriate treatment. Right now, this program has more participants than it can handle. Given what I have told you and anything else you might know about this issue, do you personally support or oppose the provincial government devoting more funds to this court program?

Strongly support -- 45 per cent

Moderately support -- 33 per cent

Moderately oppose -- eight per cent

Strongly oppose -- seven per cent

Not sure -- seven per cent

-- This question was asked as part of Probe Research's omnibus poll in early December 2010. Just over 1,000 Manitobans were surveyed and results are considered accurate 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.



With the help of a research grant from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Winnipeg Free Press has spent the last several months looking into the FASD epidemic. To read past stories in the series, see videos and interactive elements, visit

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