Monday, May 13, 2013

New York City to Reduce Use of Solitary Confinement for Inmates with Mental Illness

See this story from the New York Times.  It begins:
New York City will soon change the way mentally ill inmates are disciplined after breaking rules while in jail, creating alternatives to the more traditional approach of solitary confinement used for most inmates. 
Instead, the city Correction Department will transfer severely mentally ill inmates to an internal clinic where psychiatrists will administer treatment and medicine, and the less seriously mentally ill will go to counseling programs designed to help them change their future behavior. Inmates will not be released back into the regular jail setting until they complete treatment. 
The new approach, to begin in July, is intended to address what both city officials and prisoners’ rights advocates say is a growing problem: not only are there a disproportionate number of mentally ill inmates in the city’s jails, but they are also more likely to break rules multiple times and stay in jail longer than others.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is good news. Perhaps one day New York city will see fit to treat its many mentally ill and/or addicted people in places called hospitals. Once upon a time, we in America had the now-evidently outmoded idea that ill persons deserved to be treated humanely and in hospitals by health care professionals. Of course that turned out to be too costly and the mental health professions inadvertently assisted the process of emptying hospitals by developing the wonderful concept of treating such ill citizens closer to their homes in the community rather than off in the boonies in far away institutions. Of course we aren't willing to tax ourselves sufficiently to pay for this. Better to criminalize the mentally ill and put them in jails and prisons. Soon we'll call them Bedlams. When will we ever learn?

1:42 PM  

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