Law Enforcement

Outside of prison yard, with guard tower

Encounters with law enforcement can be hazardous for people with serious mental illnesses. Because of the gap in quality mental health services, jails and prisons are too often the provider of first resort for people with mental health conditions. Efforts are underway at all levels of government to devise approaches for diverting people with mental illnesses away from criminal justice settings and into appropriate treatment. Jails are a costly stopgap, and there is a growing consensus on the need for alternatives.

LAPD union joins national push for feds to help prepare police for contacts with mentally ill

The L.A. Police Protective League is one of more than a dozen police unions nationwide — including those in New York, San Jose and Chicago — calling on the federal government to pay for crisis-intervention training, less-lethal devices and officers who team up with mental health professionals to respond to emergency calls.

The Little Understood Mental-Health Effects of Racial Trauma

While the trigger (both literally and metaphorically) is the same, there is an aspect of these events that is frequently overlooked: the effects of the frequent police killings on black Americans’ mental health in the form of racial trauma, a psychological phenomenon that some experts say is similar to post-traumatic stress disorder.

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