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Jail Can Be a Death Sentence for the Mentally Ill
by Axios
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  • Sharon

    Mental illness is not a personal choice. It is not a lifestyle choice. It is not a deterioration of morals or ethics or integrity. It is a health problem which can be devastating to the citizen, the family, and the community. With the crash and burn of funding for helping and supporting citizens in our communities who present with mental illness, the judicial system has been hit hard with making bad choice A, doing nothing (such as referring that person to nonexistent or overrun mental health services), and bad choice B, sending the citizen to jail. While (for profit) prisons might choose to provide appropriate services (doubtful when they consider female hygiene products too costly), the prisoner who might receive these services is in jail-a situation where victimization is inevitable and implementation of a care plan is not conducted in the natural environment. As a nation, we need to make practical, long term steps to support citizens suffering from mental illness in the community. In the long run, this will be far more proactive and lasting.

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