APA Resident-Fellow Members
People With Mental Illness in the Criminal Justice System
Answering a Cry for Help
Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry
Committee on Psychiatry and the Community
- 211 Pages
- Editorial Reviews
- ISBN 978-0-87318-220-1
- Item #7220
Written by a committee of the Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry, People With Mental Illness in the Criminal Justice System: Answering a Cry for Help represents the collective wisdom of leaders in community psychiatry and is the third in a series of successful publications that have used Dear Abby letters as source material. The letters, submitted by readers with experience with mental illness and the criminal justice system, constitute a rich, real-world repository for the case stories presented in this fascinating volume. Using the experiences shared in the letters, the authors employ the Sequential Intercept Model to present a series of chapters offering detailed recommendations for psychiatrists, group practices, and criminal justice entities on partnering with individuals who are at risk and their families, with the goal of improving outcomes.
The book's many features and functions make it relevant to a diverse audience:
- The Dear Abby letters on which the book's stories are based are heartfelt and human, providing a depth of emotion and understanding that cannot be found elsewhere, and the down-to-earth writing style and real-world material are designed to be useful and compelling to both practitioner and layperson.
- The case-based recommendations for effective interventions are very specific and practical to promote and enhance clinical skill development.
- A robust set of appendices presents information for professionals on a variety of critically important topics, including principles for criminal justice and community psychiatry; sequential intercept mapping; stages of engagement with the criminal justice system; HIPAA regulations; screening and mental status/criminal justice history; essential systems of care; and the risk-need-responsivity model.
- An extensive section of criminal justice/mental health online resources addresses areas such as law enforcement, courts, corrections, evidence-based practices, veterans, organizations, and miscellaneous topics, providing avenues of information and assistance for individuals, families, and clinicians.
This simple, evidence-based guide challenges psychiatrists to initiate changes in their clinical work; in the operation of their agencies, programs, and teams; and in their partnerships with local criminal justice and behavioral health providers to positively impact people with behavioral health conditions in the criminal justice system. Implementing the approaches described so eloquently in People With Mental Illness in the Criminal Justice System: Answering a Cry for Help can potentially reduce the overrepresentation of people with mental illnesses in justice settings, provide alternatives to incarceration, and divert individuals who do not pose a public safety risk from jail.
A Call to Action
Chapter 1. Introduction to the Manual
Chapter 2. Getting Started: Welcoming and Hope
Chapter 3. Partnership With Families
Chapter 4. Partnership With Law Enforcement During the Crisis
Chapter 5. Partnership With Judges and the Court System
Chapter 6. Partnership With Psychiatrists Within the Corrections System
Chapter 7. Partnership in the Transition Between Jail and Community
Chapter 8. Partnership With Probation and Parole Agents: Applying Principles of Therapeutic Justice and Contingency Management
Chapter 9. Partnerships in Successful Integrated Community-Based Care
Chapter 10. Conclusion
Appendix A: Principles for Criminal Justice and Community Psychiatry
Appendix B: Sequential Intercept Mapping
Appendix C: A Letter on Security and Trauma-Informed Care
Appendix D: Stages of Engagement With the Criminal Justice System
Appendix E: Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act General Regulations
Appendix F: Screening and Mental Status/Criminal Justice History
Appendix G: Essential Systems of Care
Appendix H: Risk-Need-Responsivity Model
Appendix I: Additional Resources
Kenneth Minkoff, M.D.
Fred C. Osher, M.D.
Margaret Balfour, M.D., PhD
Frances Cournos, M.D.
Michael Flaum, M.D.
Stephen M. Goldfinger, M.D.
Terry Kupers, M.D.
H. Richard Lamb, M.D.
Steven Leifman, J.D.
Stephanie LeMelle, M.D., M.S.
Jacqueline Maus Feldman, M.D.
Mark R. Munetz, M.D.
William Nunley, M.D.
John A. Talbott, M.D.
Yvonne Yang, M.D.
As a former trial judge and justice, I have seen growing involvement and leadership from the judicial system, both from judges and law enforcement, seeking solutions to the revolving door of criminal justice for those with mental illness. Told with real- life, gut-wrenching letters, but followed by guides, tools, resources, and education for the treatment community, the Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry has written a powerful tool for real- life approaches.... A must read for every physician, psychiatrist, and medical student.—Justice Evelyn Lundberg Stratton, Retired, Ohio Supreme Court, retired
Beyond the vivid stories, lay illustrations of how we, as psychiatrists, can start to be part of the solution. The authors provide empowering information and guidance, for those of us with a curiosity to learn and do more. A must read for anyone working in community psychiatry, or even anyone in the justice system.—Dianna Dragatsi, M.D., Assistant in Clinical Psychiatry, Columbia University Medical Center; Director, Comprehensive Psychiatric Emergency Room, of New York-Presbyterian Hospital
Sobering, compelling, and inspiring, this profoundly important and timely book provides a manual of practical steps to address the concerns of both public health and public safety through establishing collaborative problem- solving partnerships between mental health providers and criminal justice personnel. The authors call for engaged involvement spanning from community to correctional facilities that is integrated, trauma informed, and recovery oriented, and attends to factors associated with illegal behaviors. An invaluable resource for all working to address the overrepresentation of people with mental illness in the criminal justice system.—Michael K. Champion, M.D., Forensic Chief, Hawai’i Department of Health, Adult Mental Health Division; Former Chair, Workgroup on Mental Illness and Criminal Justice of the Council on Psychiatry and Law, American Psychiatric Association
The criminalization of people with mental illness is a national tragedy. This excellent book with its personal stories puts a human face on the issue and is recommended reading for all mental health professionals who work in the criminal justice system.—Renee Binder, M.D., Professor and Director of Psychiatry and Law Program, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, UCSF School of Medicine, President, American Psychiatric Association