Image of Dr Helen Beckett Wilson

Dr Helen Beckett Wilson

School of Justice Studies

Faculty of Arts Professional and Social Studies

Helen is a Senior Lecturer in Criminology and has worked at LJMU since 2008. Her research interests include the social theorisation of, and responses to, drug use; the impact of social capital on social problems; the criminalisation of social policy; reducing reoffending strategies; the ‘justice’ of community punishment policy and practice and the use of critical research methods.

As a practitioner, Helen began as a Housing Support Officer, working with at-risk populations and homeless people to secure tenancy. Late she became a Hostel Worker, supporting women leaving prison as they transitioned into the community. Her last practice role was as a Drug Worker in the Criminal Justice System, providing services in Probation Offices for people whose drug use and offending were related.

Helen has undertaken Home Office research investigating young people’s drug use and service uptake and her PhD examined the justice implications of legal interventions for drug users who commit crime. Her more recent research includes an exploration of contemporary changes in cannabis markets in the UK, and an EU funded project on ''Reducing Reoffending' which facilitated co-learning and policy/practice enhancement across local and international partners (including Knowsley MBC, HMP Liverpool, Merseyside Police, The City of The Hague government and the European Research Institute in Turin).

Helen has taught a broad range of students, including Health and Legal Professionals, A-level, Community College, University Undergraduates and Postgraduates. Her university teaching has covered topics including the criminal justice system, criminological theory, research methods, policing, deviance and moral panics. She currently supervises undergraduate and postgraduate dissertations and PhD students, teaches final year undergraduates on the ‘Drugs, Intoxication and Society’ module, and Masters students on the ‘Advanced Research Methods’ module.

Degrees

2007, Keele University, United Kingdom, PhD
2003, Keele University, United Kingdom, MA Criminology and Research Methods
1998, University of Manchester, United Kingdom, BSocSci Social Policy

Certifications

Higher Education Authority, Postgraduate Certificate of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education

Academic appointments

Senior Lecturer, Criminology, Liverpool john Moores University, 2008 - present

Internet publication

Beckett Wilson H, Metcalf McGrath LJ. 2023. Living in Limbo: The experiences of UK patients who are prescribed cannabis Publisher Url Public Url

Metcalf McGrath L, Beckett Wilson H. 2023. Prescribed but prohibited: UK cannabis patients face stigma and health inequalities Publisher Url Public Url

Film

Metcalf McGrath L, Beckett Wilson H. 2023. "It's a big added stress on top of being so ill": Challenges for UK cannabis patients Publisher Url

Dataset

Metcalf McGrath L, Beckett Wilson H. 2023. “It's a big added stress on top of being so ill”: The challenges facing people prescribed cannabis in the UK DOI Publisher Url Public Url

Journal article

Beckett Wilson H, Metcalf McGrath L. 2023. “It’s a big added stress on top of being so ill”: The challenges facing people prescribed cannabis in the UK. International Journal of Drug Policy, 122 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Taylor S, Beckett Wilson H, Barrett GA, Jamieson J, Grindrod L. 2018. Cannabis Use in an English Community: Acceptance, Anxieties and the Liminality of Drug Prohibition Contemporary Drug Problems, 45 :401-424 DOI Publisher Url Public Url

Beckett Wilson H, Taylor S, Barrett GA, Jamieson J, Grindrod L. 2017. Propagating the Haze? Community and professional perceptions of cannabis cultivation and the impacts of prohibition International Journal of Drug Policy, 48 :72-80 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Worrall A, Corcoran M, Barrett GA, Beckett Wilson H, Burke L, Millings MN. 2015. Integrated Offender Management: Evaluation research in Merseyside and North Staffordshire Probation Quarterly, :28-30 Publisher Url Public Url

Beckett Wilson HE. 2014. Criminal justice? Using a social capital theory to evaluate probation-managed drug policy Probation Journal: the journal of community and criminal justice, 61 :60-78 DOI Publisher Url Public Url

Beckett H, Frisher M. 2006. Drug Use Desistance Publisher Url

Metcalf McGrath L, Beckett Wilson H. Stigmatised and stressed: UK cannabis patients living in the context of prohibition Critical Social Policy,

Report

Barrett GA, Beckett Wilson H, Burke L, Millings MN. 2015. Working Together to Reduce Reoffending: Reducing Reoffending Project 2012-2015 Publisher Url Public Url

Barrett GA, Beckett Wilson H, Burke L, Millings MN. 2015. Reducing Reoffending Project: Action Learning Set 6 Publisher Url Public Url

Barrett GA, Beckett Wilson H, Burke L, Millings MN. 2015. Reducing Reoffending Research Project: Action Learning Set 5 Publisher Url Public Url

Barrett GA, Beckett Wilson H, Burke L, Millings MN. 2014. Reducing Reoffending Research Project: Action Learning Set 4 Publisher Url Public Url

Barrett GA, Beckett Wilson H, Burke L, Millings MN. 2014. Reducing Reoffending Research Project: Action Learning Set 3 Public Url

Barrett GA, Beckett Wilson H, Burke L, Millings MN. 2013. European Reoffending Research Project: Action Learning Set 1 Publisher Url Public Url

Beckett H. 2004. Understanding Problem Drug Use Among Young People Accessing Drug Services: A multivariate approach using statistical modelling techniques Understanding Problem Drug Use Among Young People Accessing Drug Services: A multivariate approach using statistical modelling techniques :i-67 Publisher Url

Barrett GA, Beckett Wilson H, Burke L, Millings MN. European Reoffending Research Project: Action Learning Set 2 Publisher Url Public Url

Public engagement:

Festival event, Public, Invited Speaker, Pint of Science Festival 2024, "What's it like to be prescribed an illegal drug? The experiences of cannabis patients in the UK", https://pintofscience.co.uk/event/make-your-mind-up. 2024

Performance art: music, dance, drama, etc., Patients, Industry, Scientists, Researcher, film creator, Conway Hall, London, UK Medical Cannabis Patients Conference (Drug Science), Public screening of "It's a Big Added Stress on Top of Being So Ill: The Challenges facing people prescribed cannabis in the UK, animation of research findings.. 2023

Other invited event:

All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on medical cannabis under prescription, UK Parliament, London, Invited to present research findings on the experiences of cannabis patients to Members of the Commons and Lords in the APPG. 2024

Drug Science Medical Cannabis Working Group, UK-wide, Invited to present research findings to members of the Drug Science group, spanning industry members, patient representatives, clinicians and academic experts.. 2024

Media Coverage:

UK medical cannabis access beset with social and systemic barriers: Filter Magazine, New York 2024

Conference presentation:

Cannabis prescribing in the UK: Patient stories, European Research Showcase, Online/Global Science Show, Other. 2023

The experiences of people prescribed cannabis in the UK, Intersections: APSS Faculty Research Conference, Liverpool John Moores University, Oral presentation. 2023

Experiences of people using medical cannabis on prescription in the UK: Emerging findings, Drugs: North West Research Group Annual Conference, Liverpool John Moores University, Research presentation. 2022

Research Grants Awarded:

Quality Research, Exploring the experiences of people prescribed cannabis in the UK, Dr Beckett Wilson, Helen, LJMU, Grant value (£): 769, Duration of research project: 1 year. 2023

LJMU QR Funding - CCSE, Investigating the impact of changes to the UK 1971 Misuse of Drugs Act which allow the prescription of Cannabis-Based Medical Products (CBMPs), Dr Helen Beckett Wilson, Grant value (£): 2095.55. 2021

Liverpool John Moore University, Investigating the impact of changes to the UK 1971 Misuse of Drugs Act which allow the prescription of Cannabis-Based Medical Products (CBMPs), Dr Lindsey Metcalf McGrath, Grant value (£): 2095.55, Duration of research project: 8 months. 2021

Knowsley Metropolitan Borough Council, Cannabis Research in Knowsley, Taylor S, Barrett G, Jamieson J, Grindrod L., Grant value (£): 25, 740, Duration of research project: 6 months. 2013

European Commission, Reducing Reoffending in the European Union, Giles Barrett; Helen Beckett Wilson, Lol Burke, Matthew Millings (all LJMU), Grant value (£): 345,000, Duration of research project: 3 years. 2012

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