Criminalization of Mental Illness

New Hampshire to begin reporting certain mental health records to national firearm database

Thursday, August 4, 2016An announcement from New Hampshire that the state will begin complying with federal mental health reporting requirements to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) is raising concerns from disability advocates. Under the Gun Control Act of 1968, people…

Forced Medication Behind Bars | AVID Jail Project

Tuesday, June 14, 2016When the AVID Jail Project first began regularly visiting King County Correctional Facility (KCCF) last year, we had no idea that the jail was forcibly medicating some inmates. Then, one day while doing rounds in solitary confinement, we met Dwayne…

Florida newspapers win Pulitzer Prize for investigation of Florida mental health system

Tuesday, April 26, 2016
Investigative journalism award for reporting on Florida psychiatric hospitals
The Tampa Bay Times and Saratoga Herald-Tribune were awarded the Pulitzer Prize for investigative journalism April 18 for its year-long investigation into Florida’s network of state-run mental health hospitals. “…

Settlement reached to improve ADA compliance in Alabama prisons

Friday, March 18, 2016
Photo from “Cruel Confinement: Abuse, Discrimination and Death Within Alabama’s Prisons”
The Southern Poverty Law Center and the Alabama Disability Advocacy Program announced a settlement with the Alabama Department of Corrections on March 16 to settle a range of disability…

Ricardo | AVID Jail Project

Wednesday, March 2, 2016King County Jail (KCJ), located in Seattle, Washington, is reconsidering how it responds to inmates who attempt suicide or hurt themselves. As it stands, KCJ and many other correctional facilities all over the country punish inmates for acts of self-harm.…

Tallon explains what happens when jails respond to mental health symptoms with discipline rather than treatment

Thursday, January 21, 2016A man finds himself incarcerated and sentenced to spend 207 days in jail. Denied treatment for his diagnosed mental illness, his symptoms worsen and his frustration grows. The jail responds to his resulting behavior with disciplinary action. The man yells.…

Utah sued over wait times for competency restoration services

Friday, October 2, 2015
News from Utah
The state of Utah is failing to provide court-ordered competency restoration services in a reasonably timely manner for criminal defendants unable to stand trial, according to a class-action lawsuit filed September 8 by the Disability Law Center

Inmates with mental illness tell their stories through the AVID Jail Project

Wednesday, August 19, 2015The AVID Jail Project of Disability Rights Washington works on behalf of inmates with mental illness in several local jails. As Washington’s protection and advocacy agency, Disability Rights Washington is in a unique position to bring recording equipment into jails to capture and share the experiences of people with disabilities.

Settlement calls for overhaul of mental health care in LA County Jails

Wednesday, August 12, 2015
Agreement to Reduce Suicides
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department must take a variety of steps to reduce suicides in county jails, improve mental health treatment, and reduce the use of excessive force against people with mental illnesses, under a…

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