Records: Mental Health Treatment Budget Cuts Forcing Patients Into Prisons Instead of Hospitals

by Colonel on March 5, 2013

“CBS News has obtained records from police departments across the country, many in states that have made budget cuts to mental health care.

Police logs in twelve cities revealed that mental health crisis calls have increased an average of 37.5 percent over the last four years.

Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca says more mentally-ill people end up in jail when they’re not getting the medications they need.

Police say with few mental health beds available at state facilities, they have no choice but to leave the fate of people like Terrence Wooten to the criminal justice system.

”They have a mental ward in county but he wasn’t really getting the counseling and the therapy that he needed,” said Wooten.

The Department of Justice says up to 64 percent of inmates at local jails have some mental health problems.

” — John Miller, Copyright 2013 CBS Interactive Inc

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