Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Institutionalizing the Mentally Ill is Back

When we closed many institutions in the 60s, 70s, and 80s, both sides of the issue contributed to the sad state of affairs in the videos below. One the one hand, the deinstitutionalization movement demanded that those with serious psychological and psychiatric problems did not deserve to be closeted away, but that they deserved to be more integrated into society. On the other hand, deinstitutionalization and the subsequent closing of major institutions in almost every state was seen as an effective way to cut government costs.

The result? Many people with serious mental illness are unable to cope in the real world, services are stretched, and often the easiest solution is to place them in jails, where their often disruptive behavior quickly leads to solitary confinement - probably one of the most severe forms of institutionalization imaginable.

h/t Mostly Water

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