About Us

Sysan Hayes

Susan Hayes

Forensic Psychologist, Susan Hayes, is Head of Behavioural Sciences in Medicine in the Sydney Medical School at the University of Sydney, holds a doctorate in psychology and is a registered psychologist with an established forensic psychology practice, working with offenders and victims who have an intellectual disability. Over more than 20 years Susan Hayes has conducted a sustained program of research in intellectual disability (ID), focussed upon the rights of people with ID, especially those who come into contact with the criminal justice system as victims or offenders. She was amongst the first researchers in Australia and internationally to engage in this area of research. Her research has followed a logical path, first investigating the prevalence of ID in prisons and magistrates courts, followed by the development of the Hayes Ability Screening Index (HASI) to assist in the identification of people with ID within the criminal justice system. The HASI is used in research and clinical work in the UK, Australia and elsewhere and has been translated into (Canadian) French, Norwegian and Dutch. Susan has made a significant international contribution to this field through her ability to identify and solve problems, using research to benefit people with ID and their service providers and carers. In 1998 Susan Hayes was awarded the Order of Australia (AO) for services to the community, particularly through research on criminality in the young and the problems faced by people with developmental disabilities in the criminal justice system. Since 2002 she has been awarded four competitive grants, and two commissioned grants for research, one of the latter being awarded in Queensland and the other by the NHS in the UK. Susan has been granted the title of Fellow of the International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual Disability and was a recipient of the UNSW Alumni Award for Achievement, as well as being appointed Benjamin Meaker Visiting Professor to the Norah Fry Research Centre (NFRC) at the University of Bristol in 2006.