In the United States, “budget cuts” have eliminated most of the community mental health services that up until the mid 1990’s served a vast number of uninsured, unemployed, homeless, drug and/or alcohol dependent, and otherwise disenfranchised people.
Where once these people in need of services were able to access a minimal level of care including evaluations for mental illness, medications, group and individual therapy, social work support for helping them get Medicaid, job training and placement, substance abuse treatment, and connection with community support services such as AA and NA, now all of these services have largely been shut down.
Now, without access to mental health services, people who were formerly able to access care are left on their own. What happens to them?
Homelessness, drug addiction, crime related to survival on the street with mental illness.
Who assumes their care?
Well, that depends on which prison they end up in, if they don’t die at the hands of “law enforcement,” other individuals, suicide, overdose, freezing to death, or other hazards of street life.
If they’re fortunate enough to live in Chicago, where Mayor Rahm Emanuel in his “wisdom” shut down six of the city’s twelve community mental health centers, they go to Cook County Jail.
Please take the time to watch and **share** the video below, which documents the unique program for mentally ill inmates initiated by Cook County Jail, which now serves as Chicago’s main “Mental Health Center.”