United States, It Is Estimated That Up Essay

Length: 2 pages Sources: 1 Subject: Psychology Type: Essay Paper: #10383732 Related Topics: Us, Broadcasting, Mental Illness, United Nations
Excerpt from Essay :

¶ … United States, it is estimated that up to 350,000 inmates in prisons suffer from some sort of mental illness. In fact, the U.S. penal system holds three times more people with mental illness than the nation's entire psychiatric hospitals. Some have seen a trend that tends to incarcerate the mentally ill in order to keep them locked away from society; often the only alternative because of the dwindling funding for mental hospitals and clinics. Indeed, incarceration may actually increase the trauma of mental illness causing even more damage to their psyches. In addition, what happens to these incarcerated individuals when their service time is up? Simply, they are released into society and often become homeless because of their illness, and thus often victimized by police and other law enforcement agencies (National Public Radio, 2012).

According to a recent study by the United States Department of Justice, 56 per cent of jail inmates in State Prisons and 64 per cent of inmates across the country reported mental health problems with the past year. This, combined with the staggering new influx of inmates (from 200,000 persons in 1970 to more than 1.3 million in 2002) results in both the highest number of individuals behind...


Conservatively, it appears that one of the predominant (about 44 per cent) treatment options for the incarcerated mentally ill is simply to not treat at all. Before one can have a treatment program, one must have an assessment for mental health; if there is no assessment, there is no diagnosis, no diagnosis, and no treatment. There are several reasons for this: type and nature of crime, lack of funds to complete adequate assessments, lack of staff to treat, crowded prison conditions in which individual issues are not readily visible, and extreme substance abuse and masked behavior (Public Broadcasting System -Frontline, 2009).

There seem to be a huge number of reasons that the mentally ill become problems for the law. First, there are certainly inadequate resources for the mentally ill once they have been released from prison. It is difficult enough for convicted felons without mental illness to reintegrate into society, to jobs, and to family. When the problem is compounded by inadequate mental health care, access to needed medications and community support, then the mentally…

Sources Used in Documents:

Works Cited

National Public Radio. (2012, April 2). A Pateint's Perspective: Police and the Mentally Ill. Retrieved from npr.org: http://www.npr.org/2012/04/02/149857042/a-patients-perspective-police-and-the-mentally-ill

Public Broadcasting System -Frontline. (2009, April 28). The Released. Retrieved from pbs.org: http://video.pbs.org/video/1114528522/

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