Saturday, November 30, 2013

Criegh Deeds Blames Mental Health System for Son's Death | Video - ABC News

Criegh Deeds Blames Mental Health System for Son's Death | Video - ABC News



  Breaking News from ABC

News and Commentary from the Treatment Advocacy Center
November 25 - November 29, 2013

SENT WITH HOPES AND BEST WISHES FOR A WONDERFUL THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY AND WEEKEND.

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"Coming December 2: A SAMHSA Seminar Examining AOT"
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration this MONDAY, DEC. 2, will present and broadcast of a public-service program examining the impact of assisted outpatient treatment (AOT) on people with severe mental illness. Advance registration is necessary. 
FIND DETAILS HERE....

"A Bellwether Vote from Berkeley?"
The Berkeley City Council's unanimous vote last week to urge adoption of California’s Laura’s Law in Alameda County may reflect a national trend. 
READ IT ALL....

"The Road to Recovery"
Montana’s civil commitment laws allowed Gary Mihelish’s oldest son to begin the road to recovery after being diagnosed with schizophrenia, a journey Mihelish described on NPR’s Weekend Edition Sunday. 
READ IT ALL....

"Loss of Treatment Options Now a National Crisis"
The Creigh Deeds tragedy in Virginia sounded the national alarm bell over the United States’ shortage of psychiatric beds for people in psychiatric crisis. But what was lost in the din was a discussion of the other tragedies that occur daily as a result of untreated mental illness. 
READ IT ALL....

"Responding to Anti-Psychiatry Protestors"
Psychiatrists “need to acknowledge that some of the points the protesters make are valid,” writes Dinah Miller, MD. But we also "need to respond to studies showing fault with psychiatry that have been overly touted by the media and are simply wrong.” 
READ IT ALL....

A big thank-you to Kathleen Branch, Marilyn Martin and Arlene Saks-Martin, whose letters were published in the Baltimore Sun.

If you have a letter or commentary published, please email a link or a copy topress@treatmentadvocacycenter.org so we can save it, acknowledge your reform efforts, and share it with others.

Treatment Advocacy Center 
200 N. Glebe Road, Suite 730, Arlington, VA 22203 
703 294 6001/6002 (phone) | 703 294 6010 (fax) |
www.treatmentadvocacycenter.org

Friday, November 29, 2013

The state legislature made it impossible to get treatment for him until he had demonstrated that he was dangerous. But by then, it was too late.

E. Fuller Torrey - Adam Lanza's Civil Rights and Ours
http://www.nationalreview.com

The report released by Connecticut yesterday on Adam Lanza’s massacre of 20 schoolchildren and six adults in Newtown makes clear how well we protected his civil rights. 

The report details his “mental health issues,” which in reality were strong evidence that he had developed a severe mental illness. He had been afflicted with an autism-like syndrome since childhood and had been formally diagnosed with Asperger’s disorder. This diagnosis by itself is not associated with an increased propensity for violent behavior. However, in recent years, Lanza had developed symptoms of a more severe mental illness, which occurs in approximately 5 percent of individuals who have autism-like symptoms or mental retardation in childhood. This mental illness, which has psychotic features and is similar to schizophrenia, is associated with an increased propensity for violent acts if not treated. It includes delusional thinking, including a belief that others are trying to control your mind or hurt you. Adam Lanza’s bizarre behavior, including covering his bedroom windows, is consistent with such beliefs. 

Adam Lanza was clearly in need of evaluation and treatment. Forty years ago, he would have been admitted to Fairfield State Hospital, which was located in Newtown, close to his home, and given a trial of antipsychotic medication to improve his symptoms. If he responded and continued to take his medication, he might have led a useful life, maybe as a computer programmer or in a similar job. 

But Fairfield State Hospital was closed in 1995 as part of the deinstitutionalization movement and attempts by Connecticut to save state money. The theory was that people like Adam Lanza could be evaluated in the psychiatric unit of general hospitals, except that almost no general hospital in the United States has the specialized personnel needed to evaluate a person like Adam Lanza. Furthermore, it is no longer possible to get someone like Lanza into a psychiatric unit unless he agrees, which he wasn’t about to do. The commitment laws in Connecticut specify that a person can only be committed for a psychiatric evaluation if he is dangerous. Connecticut’s law does not include a “need for treatment” provision, as some states do. Connecticut’s laws do not even include a provision for outpatient commitment, as 45 other states do. 

So Connecticut protected the civil rights of Adam Lanza very effectively. The state legislature made it impossible to get treatment for him until he had demonstrated that he was dangerous. But by then, it was too late. And in zealously protecting his civil rights, the Connecticut legislature appears to have neglected the civil rights of 20 first graders and their families and the other six adults who were killed. — Dr. Torrey is the author of American Psychosis: How the Federal Government Destroyed the Mental Illness Treatment System and is the founder of the Treatment Advocacy Center.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

“[T]he judge told our son: ‘I want you to take your medication, and if you don’t take the medication, I’ll put you in the state hospital,’” Mihelish told NPR. The young man followed the judge’s orders and now – nearly 30 years later – Milhelish says his son is doing “pretty darn good.”



(Nov. 25, 2013) Montana’s civil commitment laws allowed Gary Mihelish’s oldest son to begin the road to recovery after being diagnosed with schizophrenia, a journey Mihelish described this weekend on NPR’s Weekend Edition Sunday (“Caring for a schizophrenic son, worrying about the future,” NPR, Nov. 24).
fathersonMihelish said the first sign that his son might have a mental illness was that he “began to isolate and he just withdrew into himself. We thought it might just be adolescence, an adjustment.”
The situation worsened for the Mihelish family when the young man entered his 20s and took off to California following a psychotic breakdown. “He had no money, was living on the streets,” his father said. Upon his son’s eventual return home and a mental health evaluation, he was diagnosed with schizophrenia.
Finally, things began to stabilize as a result of a civil commitment hearing. “[T]he judge told our son: ‘I want you to take your medication, and if you don’t take the medication, I’ll put you in the state hospital,’” Mihelish told NPR.
The young man followed the judge’s orders and now – nearly 30 years later – Milhelish says his son is doing “pretty darn good.”
Gary Mihelish became a lifelong advocate for mental illness treatment law reform as a result of his son’s experience. He received NAMI’s “Distinguished Service Award” in 2013 and has consistently worked with the Treatment Advocacy Center to improve his state’s treatment policies so that even more families can benefit the way his own family did.
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Visit our blog archive to read all our recent posts.
www.treatmentadvocacycenter.org

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

SAMHSA will present and broadcast a public-service program examining the impact of assisted outpatient treatment (AOT) on people with severe mental illness on Monday, December 2, from 9 am to 1 pm.

The public may attend the program at SAMHSA’s headquarters in Rockville, Maryland, or online through the agenda’s webcast or telephone dial-in.

Treatment Advocacy Center Policy Director Brian Stettin will participate as a panelist.

“The seminar is designed to educate and improve the understanding of assisted outpatient treatment,” according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website on the event.  “The presenters at this seminar will examine research findings, implications, and outcomes of AOT and topics related to persons with serious mental illnesses.”

Duke University researchers Marvin S. Swartz and Jeffrey W. Swanson will open the seminar with a review of research findings on AOT, followed by a question/answer period.

Next, Brian and two other panelists will discuss “applications and implications of assisted outpatient treatment,” followed by a second question and answer period.

Both the live and the virtual audiences will be able to submit questions to the presenters.

The
full agenda for the seminar is available on the SAMHSA website. Registration is available online.

The Treatment Advocacy Center is urging the public to attend and participate in this highly anticipated event. Seating and webcast lines are limited so immediate registration is urged.

Monday, November 25, 2013

A Reader Complains: You’re Insulting Me By Writing About Jails, Prisons, and Homelessness: I Am Not Like Them

Mr. Pete Earley responds:
angrywriter
Dear Mr. Earley,
Why do you always assume mentally ill people either are homeless or in jail?
That’s insulting.  I have a serious mental illness but hold down a job, have a family and am dong fine. If I break the law, then I deserve to go to jail. If I end up homeless it will be because I’m lazy and don’t work or because I don’t take my meds.  Either way, it will be my fault.
People with mental illnesses should be held accountable and treated no differently from anyone else. To do otherwise is to promote stigma and make all of us look like we are criminals or bums.
Sincerely
Alan M.
Dear Alan M.,
I am thrilled that you are doing so well. When my son was sick, I ached for success stories such as your’s. I wanted hope. I wanted to know that persons with severe mental illnesses could and do recover and live regular lives. Please share your personal story with others, especially those who are struggling, because they need to be inspired.
Sadly, I do not agree with much else that you have written.
Individuals with serious mental illnesses have a brain disorder that impairs their thinking. There are different levels of impairment. With meaningful treatment, whether that be therapy, medication or some other assistance, most do well. But getting meaningful mental health care is difficult and even then, some individuals with the most severe disorders will not fully recover.
Obviously, most people who get sick do not break the law or end up on the streets. Statistics show that. But some do and I believe the majority of those individuals end up in trouble because of their illnesses, not because of some character defect, immorality or laziness.
Does my focus on jails and homelessness encourage stigma?  I hope not. I hope that most readers realize that I write about these issues because our system is broken and there are ways to fix it so that we can stop turning our jails into our asylums and end homelessness.
Why do I focus on persons with mental illnesses who are in jails and prisons?
The obvious answer is because of what happened to my family, specifically to my son. If you have read my book, you will know that I tried to get my son help when his psychosis first surfaced. I ran into barriers that kept me from helping him. When his delusions became worst, he broke into an unoccupied house to take a bubble bath. He was bitten by a police dog when officers responded, could have easily been shot and was charged with two felonies. I was outraged because my son is not a burglar or thief.
My son is doing great now, but I continue to focus on jails and prisons because the number of  persons with mental illnesses getting entrapped in the criminal justice system is growing. I have just returned from speaking in Oregon where more than 8,000 persons with severe mental illnesses pass through the county jail in Portland every year. These folks are not psychopaths. Most are there for minor offenses such as trespassing related to their illnesses or co-occurring problems.
Dr. Fred Osher spoke at that  same conference and talked about a recent study that he performed with public policy researcher Hank Steadman, using a very narrow definition of serious mental illness. They found that 17% of all prisoners in American jails and prisons today have a serious mental disorder. That equals 750,000 prisoners, or nearly twice the number from when I did the research for my book less than ten years ago. Their study found that  1,250, 000 people with mental disorders are on probation or under community control.
Many of these prisoners are held under the worst possible conditions despite the minor charges filed against them.  Ron Honberg,  legal policy director of the National Alliance on Mental Illness,  told a Senate subcommittee last year that severely mentally ill inmates are three times more likely to be put into solitary confinement than other inmates.
While conditions in jails are improving, most prisoners do not receive any mental health care while they are incarcerated. Under the 8th amendment, if a serial killer in prison gets a tooth ache, he is entitled to decent dental care. If a rapist needs to have his appendix removed, he gets the operation. But under that same amendment, if a prisoner has a serious mental illness, there is no guarantee that he will get medical help. He is more likely to be put in segregation and punished for his bizarre behavior.
That doesn’t mean that I am ignoring the harm and damage that some delusional defendants have done. But I believe their actions, no matter how horrific, need to be viewed through the lens of their illnesses.
I understand why you do not like being lumped together with prisoners or the homeless. However, I would think that someone who has experienced psychosis would be more understanding, not less, of how easy it can be for someone in the midst of a mental breakdown to end up being arrested or homeless because of impaired thinking and a lack of decent health care services.
I hope you will join me in demanding better community services and a return to when mental illness was a health issue, not a criminal justice one.



http://www.peteearley.com/2013/10/28/a-reader-complains-youre-insulting-me-by-writing-about-jails-prisons-and-homelessness-i-am-not-like-them/

Friday, November 22, 2013

The TAC Nails It: Loss of Treatment Options Now a National Crisis

(Nov. 22, 2013) The Creigh Deeds tragedy in Virginia sounded the national alarm bell over the United States’ shortage of psychiatric beds for people in psychiatric crisis. But what was lost in the fray was a discussion of the other tragedies that occur daily as a result of untreated mental illness.
creigh_deedsJails and prisons have replaced hospitals as the institutions housing the most psychiatric patients. Until we stop eliminating public psychiatric beds and start making treatment available before severely ill individuals become inmates, this will remain the case.
More people with untreated severe mental illnesses are living on America’s streets than are receiving care in hospitals. One study found that 28% of homeless people with previous psychiatric hospitalizations obtained some food from garbage cans, and 8% used garbage cans as their primary food source.  
Untreated severe mental illness is an increasing factor in officer-involved homicides. At least half the people shot and killed by police each year are believed to have mental health problems.
Even though violence against others and sensational mass killings attract the most media attention, suicide is the number one cause of premature death among people with schizophrenia, with an estimated 10% to 13% taking their own lives every year.
The mental illness treatment system in America is a disgrace, and the non-treatment of mental illness is a growing crisis. Let’s hope the events that left Creigh Deeds injured and his son Gus, 24, dead aren’t just the next fading headline but an impetus to address all the tragedies of untreated severe mental illness.
To comment, visit our Facebook page.
Visit our blog archive to read all our recent posts.
www.treatmentadvocacycenter.org

News and Commentary from the Treatment Advocacy Center
November 11 - November 22, 2013
To get news as soon as we post it, follow us on Facebook or Twitter.

This News Roundup includes news and commentary from the past two weeks.

"No Psych Beds Found For Son Who Attacked Father, VA Senator Creigh Deeds"
“The elimination of hospital beds for people who are psychotic or otherwise need help in a crisis is a driving force behind a long list of terrible consequences, including preventable violent acts,” says Doris A. Fuller.
READ IT ALL....
"What Would You Do?"
At least 60 people observed a man exhibiting signs of severe mental illness and did nothing. One of our supporters asks, “What should they have done?”
READ IT ALL....
"An Influx of Inmates with Mental Illness in Oregon"
It should come as no surprise to anyone that a third of inmates in Oregon have some sort of mental health issue. Oregon has roughly 18 psychiatric beds per 100,000 people, which is only 39% of the recommended number of beds.
READ IT ALL....
"Responding to Anti-Psychiatry Protestors"
Psychiatrists “need to acknowledge that some of the points the protesters make are valid,” writes Dinah Miller, MD. But we also "need to respond to studies showing fault with psychiatry that have been overly touted by the media and are simply wrong.”
READ IT ALL....
"New Mental-Health Regs Won't Help People Who Need It the Most"
People with anosognosia, regardless of insurance status, won’t necessarily benefit from the new rule that private insurers cover mental illness the same as physical illness.
READ IT ALL....
"Richard Dreyfuss Shares His Struggle With Bipolar"
“By telling my own story, I hope to help remove the stigma. It never should be something to hide," actor Richard Dreyfuss tells People Magazine about his decision to seek treatment for his mental illness in 1995.
READ IT ALL....
"True in 1999, True Today"
We have emptied state mental hospitals, but we have not provided commensurate outpatient treatment, said the late Senator Patrick Moynihan on the Community Mental Health Centers Act.
READ IT ALL....
"Behind the Bars of the New Asylum"
In response to a rash of suicides in jails and prisons, Rikers Island is adding more beds for solitary confinement and DC Mayor Vincent Gray has committed to removing the towel bars from cells.
READ IT ALL....
A big thank-you to Frank Mongillo, whose letter was published in the New Haven Register in Connecticut, and to Mitzi Anderson, whose letter was published in the Whitfish Pilot in Montana.
If you have a letter or commentary published, please email a link or a copy to press@treatmentadvocacycenter.org so we can save it, acknowledge your reform efforts, and share it with others.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Shortage of psychiatric beds state & nationwide issue - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

"We've had the hospital drop clients off in a taxi cab with no shirt on at 5 p.m. on a Friday because they had no where for the person to be," Support Systems Roanoke Director Tracie Cookston says.
Cookston says there can be major consequences if people can't get adequate care.
She says it adds extra work for law enforcement, fills up jails and prisons, increases the homeless population, and can make the emergency room often the only option.
"There are not enough beds to accommodate the system that's in place to help people who have mental health issues," Cookston says. "It's broken and it really needs to get fixed."

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Pete Earley: Deeds attack shows that our system is a mess

Yet again someone in the midst of a mental crisis did not get the help he needed.  Why?
http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2013/11/20/pete-earley-creigh-deeds-mental-illness/3654793/

Rep. Murphy: Federal, state, and local governments share blame for Virginia stabbing

Source: National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors


http://www.nasmhpd.org/index.aspx

We are looking for a family member who can speak to CNN about difficulty getting a psych bed for their loved one with serious mental illness. If you have a story you can share with the media and live in DC, Maryland or Virginia please email press@treatmentadvocacycenter.org

NO ROOM AT THE INN Trends and Consequences of Closing Public Psychiatric Hospitals

Read the study by the Treatment Advocacy Center here: http://www.tacreports.org/bed-study


Treatment Advocacy Center: "NO PSYCH BEDS AVAILABLE FOR SON WHO ATTACKED FATHER, VA SENATOR CREIGH DEEDS"

Reports indicate that Gus Deeds, 24, was released from an emergency hold at a Virginia hospital yesterday because no psychiatric beds were available. Following his release he stabbed his father, Senator Creigh Deeds (D-Bath), in the head and torso before fatally shooting himself. 
While it remains unclear whether Gus Deeds suffered from a diagnosed mental illness, this tragedy appears to be yet another incident related to our failure as a nation to provide adequate treatment options for the most severely ill. Virginia only has 37% of the beds considered necessary to meet the needs of its population, according to our study “No Room at the Inn: Trends and Consequences of Closing Public Psychiatric Hospitals.”

This continuous emptying of state psychiatric hospitals for the past half-century has reduced the number of public beds for acutely or chronically ill patients by more than 90% while the US population nearly doubled. 

Even though most individuals with serious mental illness are not dangerous, there is a correlation between lack of treatment for mental illness and certain violent crimes, including 10% of all homicides. Almost all these acts of violence are committed by individuals who are not being treated.

“The elimination of hospital beds for people who are psychotic or otherwise need help in a crisis is a driving force behind a long list of terrible consequences, including preventable violent acts,” said Doris A. Fuller, executive director of the Treatment Advocacy Center.

“We will keep seeing tragedies like this until we provide sufficient inpatient beds to meet the needs of people in psychiatric crisis,” the executive continued. “If there had been a hospital bed available for Gus Deeds, he may be alive today, and his father would not be grievously wounded.”


The bad thing? Gus Deeds was denied the life saving treatment he so desperately needed. The really, really bad and totally unacceptable thing? This was a preventable tragedy.

“He’s so committed to his community, he’s so committed to the state, he’s so committed to his family,” he told TIME. “When bad things happen to good people it just breaks your heart a little bit.”

Read more: Creigh Deeds: Virginia State Senator In Critical Condition In Stabbing | TIME.com http://nation.time.com/2013/11/19/virginia-state-senator-creigh-deeds-stabbed-son-shot-to-death/#ixzz2lBb4Z05j


"That was a conscious choice to help his son get back on his feet, to get some stability in his life. I just know that Creigh made a commitment to his son in that way," Petersen said.

More and more often, family members are the ultimate caregivers, even when they should not be. 

Senator Deeds' son had just been evaluated by a professional who recommended hospitalization. But there was no hospital bed available.  So what choice did his family have but to bring him home?  

Home should be a place of security and sanctuary.  But home is no longer safe when when it must harbor a family member who is actively psychotic.  

Prayers and thoughts to the Deeds family today.  Treatment before tragedy.

http://www.cnn.com/2013/11/19/politics/virginia-politician-attack/index.html?hpt=hp_bn3

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

"No available beds" is a horrible, unacceptable and dangerous excuse to give parents of adult children in psychiatric crisis!

Creigh Deeds’ son had mental-health evaluation Monday - Richmond Times-Dispatch: Government And Politics

Dennis Cropper, executive director of the Rockbridge County Community Services Board, told the Richmond Times-Dispatch that the emergency custody order, or ECO, allowed Gus Deeds to be held as long as four hours to determine whether he should be kept longer, up to 48 hours, under a temporary detention order.
The son was evaluated Monday at Bath Community Hospital, Cropper said, but was released because no psychiatric bed could be located across a wide area of western Virginia.
Read the article here:  Creigh Deeds’ son had mental-health evaluation Monday - Richmond Times-Dispatch: Government And Politics

Friday, November 15, 2013

North Carolina Must Get Serious about Severe Mental Illness

For those patients who refuse to take medication or adhere to treatment, assisted outpatient treatment may be the best option. In AOT, a judge orders a person to get treatment if it is necessary to prevent dangerous psychological deterioration. Once assigned to AOT, participants receive intensive outpatient services that are designed to foster recovery and stability. Clinical studies at Duke University and Columbia University show that AOT is an evidence-based practice that effectively reduces the rates of re-hospitalization, arrest and victimization. Assisted outpatient treatment also saves money in the long term, because emergency rooms and incarceration are extremely costly to taxpayers. Those savings are significant: A study by Duke researchers found that the average annual cost declined by 50 percent in one sample and 62 percent in another.
There are some who may balk at the idea of court-ordered mental health treatment. Dave Richard, director of mental health for DHHS, recently described assisted outpatient treatment as a “pretty restrictive model,” and expressed concerns that court-ordered outpatient treatment takes away patients’ ability to make decisions for themselves. For some people with severe mental illnesses like paranoid schizophrenia, however, that decision-making capacity may already be compromised. Certainly voluntary treatment is always preferable to assisted outpatient treatment. But when people’s conditions cause them to repeatedly devolve into psychotic crisis, court-ordered treatment may be the only way to secure a good outcome for patients, families, and the public as a whole.

Read more here: http://www.newsobserver.com/2013/11/15/3374423/nc-must-get-serious-about-severe.html#storylink=cpy

Read the entire article in The News & Observer (Charlotte, NC): http://www.newsobserver.com/2013/11/15/3374423/nc-must-get-serious-about-severe.html

Responding to antipsychiatry protestors : Clinical Psychiatry News

Psychiatrists “need to acknowledge that some of the points the protesters make are valid,” writes the doctor. But we also "need to respond to studies showing fault with psychiatry that have been overly touted by the media and are simply wrong.”

Responding to antipsychiatry protestors : Clinical Psychiatry News

http://www.treatmentadvocacycenter.org/about-us/our-blog/69-no-state/2435-qresponding-to-antipsychiatry-protestorsq


Sunday, November 10, 2013

Wyoming considers improving AOT law

“One of things I’m most proud of this bill is it tries to intervene before truly bad things happen,” Sen. John Schiffer said. “I believe it is our obligation as legislator to prevent them to the best of our ability.”

Read the article here: Lawmakers propose involuntary hospitalization reform - Wyoming Tribune Eagle Online

Saturday, November 9, 2013

News and Commentary from the Treatment Advocacy Center
November 4 - November 8, 2013
To get news as soon as we post it, follow us on Facebook or Twitter.
"I Think About My Brother Every Day" - personally speaking
Every day I think of our family's story and the loss of my brother due to his lack of treatment for his mental illness,” writes Denise Schmitt, whose brother "was like any other member of our family" - until he wasn't. READ IT ALL....
"The Reviews Are In! 'A Compelling Case for Reform'"
Read what the reviewers are saying about Dr. E. Fuller Torrey's latest book, American Psychosis: How the Federal Government Destroyed the mental Illness Treatment System. 
READ IT ALL....
"Carla Jacobs - A Profile of Hope"
Honored by Los Angeles County for her advocacy, Treatment Advocacy Center board member Carla Jacobs says she is guided by a basic principle that access to treatment for mental disorders is a human right as well as an obligation of and a benefit to the society that provides it. 
READ IT ALL....
"All-Voluntary Treatment Looks Good Until You Look at it"
Opponents of court-ordered treatment often say an all-voluntary mental health system would work just fine, and it does for some people. But not for the people who are too sick to know they are sick. 
READ IT ALL....
WATCH: Doris A. Fuller talks with CNN alongside Dr. Jeffrey Lieberman, president of the American Psychiatric Association, and Dr. Drew about mental illness, the treatment system and solutions. Watch the clip….
If you have a letter or commentary published, please email a link or a copy topress@treatmentadvocacycenter.org so we can save it, acknowledge your reform efforts, and share it with others.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Laws surrounding mental illness make it harder for victims to get treatment

This letter is from a Maryland mother but could just as easily have been written by a Tennessee mother.

Why?

Because Maryland and Tennessee are two of only 5 states in the nation without Assisted Outpatient Treatment laws on the books.  
"Understanding that the seriously mentally ill cannot make reasonable decisions and choices for themselves is an important first step. It is critical for lawmakers to know that many of us desperately want to get a loved one evaluated and potentially hospitalized before something worse happens, but the laws stand in our way."
Read her entire letter here:
Laws surrounding mental illness make it harder for victims to get treatment
News and Commentary from the Treatment Advocacy Center
October 28 - November 1, 2013
To get news as soon as we post it, follow us on Facebook or Twitter.
"Read Our Fall 2013 Catalyst Online Now"
A roundup of our latest research and publications, a peek at American Psychosis and our report card on how well states are keeping people with severe mental illness out of jail are all covered in our fall 2013 newsletter.
READ IT ALL....
"Maryland Needs to Modernize Its Mental Health Laws"
Two powerful letters in this week’s Baltimore Sun are calling for better treatment options for people who don’t recognize they are sick – a category that includes about half of those suffering with the most severe mental illnesses.
READ IT ALL....
"Schizophrenia Robbed My Son of His Dignity" - personally speaking
"I have a 33-year-old son suffering from schizophrenia who is currently homeless....I have watched this illness rob my son of all personal dignity, of all ability to gauge what is real,” writes Gloria Davidson in a blog advocating for AOT in Alameda County, California.
READ IT ALL....
"Everyone Suffers in Fatal Encounters"
"No police officer does well with shooting someone, let alone someone with mental illness," Treatment Advocacy Center board member, Michael Biasotti, told the Wall Street Journal. “That destroys a bunch of people at once.”
READ IT ALL....
"Mental Health As a Health Issue, Not a Safety Issue"
“We are increasingly talking about mental health as a safety issue, not a health issue,” Pam Hyde told an audience of mental health professionals, leaders and advocates. “When we talk about mass killings, we are talking about mental illness not being treated.”
READ IT ALL....
A big thank-you to:
    • Don and Judy Turnbaugh, who were featured in the Tampa Tribune
    • Candy DeWitt, whose guest commentary was featured in the San Jose Mercury News
    • Marilyn Martin, Arlene Saks-Martin and Kathleen Branch, whose letters to the editor were all featured in the Baltimore Sun
If you have a letter or commentary published, please email a link or a copy to press@treatmentadvocacycenter.org so we can save it, acknowledge your reform efforts, and share it with others.