Below is an email from a woman who needs your help. Please endorse and share her petition. These are the facts of the matter as Cynthia relayed them to me:
Cynthia Davis reported a woman for child neglect last year. The woman retaliated by falsely accusing Cynthia Davis of a crime. The white police officer who went to Cynthia Davis' home to question or arrest her on the woman's allegations attacked and beat Cynthia, who is an African America. He caused her to fall, and Cynthia incurred a head injury. Since that abuse, Cynthia suffers from seizures and PTSD. She was unable to work, lost her home, and had many other problems - all since her police brutality occurred. She was so stressed as the day of trial approached that Cynthia had a stroke recently, and now she has impaired speech. Cynthia is an educated woman and was making an excellent income prior to her brutality which caused her head injury and led to her financial, mental, and physical crisis.
CYNTHIA DAVIS IS IN COURT TODAY.
The police officer who beat Cynthia and caused her disabilities was in the news for beating another citizen. Cynthia said the Newark D.A. offered her a deal: If she agreed not to pursue damages for police brutality, and she would not have to stand charges on the negligent mom's false allegations. This was clearly blackmail, and Cynthia would not accept the deal.
Unfortunately, court is not going well for Cynthia. She said that the day a hearing was held, the judge walked in court and asked something to this effect: "Is there someone in here who needs a mental health break," and the D.A. and police officers all laughed with the judge. Next, the court refuses to allow Cynthia's evidence that her prosecution is the result of blackmail. They disallow her admitting police phone records from 9/8/08 and police videotape from 9/1/08, 9/2/08, and 9/8/08. She asks your support on her petition for justice and for your prayers. Petition for Cynthia Davis to have a fair trial: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/2/please-promote-and-support-advocacy-for-cynthia-johnson
My Care2 friends and family, . I know that I've sent this message to you quite a few times but it's getting down to crunch time and the local government still has not released the police phone records and/or videotape that would prove without a doubt that I have actually been abused and harrassed by one of our finest blues. . This cover-up has caused so much harm to my life and I am still to this day trying to recover and rebuild and they are still trying to blackmail me into doing things their way in order not to prosecute me and not release their records. Yesterday was a nightmare trying to prepare for tomorrow's court date. Local government officials are shameless and disgusting with their "CODE OF SILENCE" rules and they back each other whether they know each other or not. . I thank you all for signing and forwarding this petition but I still need your help. If there are any that have not signed, please do so and then forward to friends, family, colleagues, and any organizations that might post this petition to their websites. If any of you have already signed, please forward to friends, family, colleagues, and any organizations that might post it to their websites. I have a little over 24 hours to get some major interest into this situation or I just might get seriously harmed in court tomorrow. I don't even feel safe walking into that courthouse full of Newark police officers. I asked for an escort the last time I was there and was refused. . Please help! The countdown has begun to either my freedom or my incarceration for a crime that I did not commit. I stood up for myself and this is what I am being prosecuted for. Nothing more! All I have left is the TRUTH! http://www.thepetitionsite.com/2/please-promote-and-support-advocacy-for-cynthia-johnson CA
I read that at Am Liberals that the Virginia Tech families want the case re-opened about the man who shot their loved ones. Many other families have been impacted by violence against their members by persons with a long history of mental illness. The mentally ill themselves are most often victims of their own dysfunctions and the way the system responds to their conditions - tasering, shooting them, imprisonment at great expense to taxpayers - rather than treatment. See http://wrongfuldeathoflarryneal.com
Why is this allowed to continue? Simply so that the mentally ill can be preserved UNTREATED and land in prisons and jails. Private prison facilities use mentally ill persons as commodities. Currently, American taxpayers pay around $50 BILLION per year for prison fees, and over 1/2 of those imprisoned are mentally ill people who should be under MANDATORY TREATMENT in their communities or if they did violent crimes, they should be hospitalized without their agreement being needed.
I am CENSORED and ENDANGERED because I advocate for enforced care for mental patients, something that would cost prison profiteers dearly because Kendra's Law already proved that program participants experienced around 90% reduction in incarceration, hospitalization, and homelessness once they were enrolled in the Assisted Outpatient Treatment Program (AOT).
The Virginia Tech families are right to demand answers. As more soldiers transition home with PTSD, we should all demand changes in the way mental illness is treated in America. Sgt. Russel is NOT the only soldier who did numerous consecutive tours of duty and lost his sense of reason. Before there are more VA Tech incidents - maybe while YOUR teens are at the mall - demand an end to the existing laws that mentally ill persons must "prove to be a danger to self and others." Why must we wait until there are smoking guns and dripping knives and bodies here and there before a mental patient gets Enforced Treatment -- but not in his hospital or in his community where he should have, but in PRISON, so that rich prison owners and investors can profit?
Already, there is a marked increase in the criminal acts being done by veterans - particularly veterans from the present overseas conflict. Our military personnel will soon transition home and many will become prisoners of war like Sgt. Russel. Someone has to die before mental patients are treated IN PRISONS, when they should have gotten care before the tragedies. But who must die before the next vet gets care? Been to the mall lately?
I am also CENSORED and ENDANGERED because of this and because I write about my mentally ill brother who was held under SECRET ARRESTand murdered, and authorities REFUSE his family any records or accountability - Freedom of Information Act Request re: Shelby County Jail and The Cochran Firm Fraud -
President Obama's executive order to strengthen the FOIA does not matter when it comes to hiding the truth about Larry Neal's murder in Shelby County Jail in Memphis, TN in 2003.
I am CENSORED and suffer from CYBERSTALKERS and in-person STALKING to prevent my telling the world about the PLAN to preserve mental patients untreated for future arrest and to prevent your knowing about my brother's murder. Tonight I found that my RSS feed from Care2 has been deactivated so you would not be able to read the truth about either of these things. See this that shows my feed was deactivated three weeks ago, although the setting is still set to feed. There are huge GAPS in the data that went to RSS, also. NOW THEY STOPPED MY RSS FEED FROM MY SHAREBOOK
SEE THIS - the feed ends three weeks ago. They also were choosing what to feed. Censorship is intolerable. What is the problem? All we discuss is decriminalizing mental illness, anti-death penalty advocacy, and ending police brutality. ARE THOSE TABOO SUBJECTS ON CARE2 - the network for people who CARE?:
The Obama administration is making some commendable policy changes for America. One of President Obama's first executive orders strengthened the Freedom of Information Act. He also signed an executive order to end prison torture in the War on Terror camps. The Bush administration USDOJ issued orders to torture detainees in the prison camps. Prisoners within America also suffered gross abuses and death. Under that administration, my family was refused any assistance resolving the 2003 secret arrest and wrongful death of Larry Neal, my mentally ill brother, a heart patient. Shelby County Jail in Memphis repeatedly and falsely denied having Larry incarcerated until his death after 18 days of secret arrest. The USDOJ allowed Larry's jail death to go without investigation because "equal justice" was not applied to protecting the rights of mentally ill Americans. Even their right to life was not protected, which is reminiscent of how mentally afflicted citizens were killed outright in Nazi Germany.
During Ronald Regan's presidency, many mental hospitals were downsized or closed. Tens of thousands of former inpatients were left to fend for themselves. Many of them and sick people who came after them lived homeless on the streets of our cities. Scores slept in shelters if they were not deemed too unruly. Others became "bag ladies" who carried their meager possessions around in shopping carts. Thousands slept under America's overpasses and behind dumpsters. Many of them froze, died of medical neglect, starvation, botched arrest attempts, and some were easy prey for street criminals. Over time, the lack of attention and resources for our most vulnerable citizens became the predominant reason for horrific murders done to and by persons who would have been hospital inpatients.
The so-called "deinstitutionalization" of mental patients also caused America's astronomical prison population, the largest in world history. Criminalizing mental illness and prejudicial sentencing laws account for 1 in every 99.1 Americans being imprisoned today, and 1 in 9 young black men. Once incarcerated, the mentally ill generally suffer more cruel punishment than other detainees, comprising 60% of those warehoused in solitary confinement. The recidivism rate among the mentally ill is very high, as punishment does not resolve their issues or deter their illness from manifesting itself in unacceptable ways.
The VIDEO at the article below shows Nafiza Ziyad's bipolar crisis on an Atlanta MARTA train in 2008. The video illustrates the complete loss of control some schizophrenic and bipolar victims experience when their conditions go untreated. No one in such a health crisis should be punished any more than a person with diabetes who blacks out at the wheel would be imprisoned. The answer is better treatment access, including enforced care if the patients are too sick to recognize their own illness.
Criminalizing mental illness may be done in part to increase profits to prison investors. Mental hospitalization and community care could provide humane alternatives to mentally challenged citizens, reduce overcrowded prison conditions, reducie the taxpayers' burden, and increase public safety. It costs no more to treat mentally ill offenders in hospitals if they are violent or in their communities if they are not violent than it does to imprison them - usually in cruel conditions such as solitary confinement.
Our prison industry budget is over $50 BILLION per year. Each inmate costs taxpayers up to $50,000 per year to warehouse in jail. Therefore, the more people who are incarcerated, the more money prison investors make. The worse crime offenders commit, the longer their prison sentences. A 30-year-old murderer can easily cost taxpayers over $3 million if he gets a life sentence. Death penalties are illegal for the mentally ill; however, it is done. Each death row inmate costs taxpayers around $90,000 PER YEAR MORE than maximum security prison inmates.
HOSPITALIZATION FOR VIOLENT OFFENDERS
The quickest and least costly way to address many justice problems in the U.S. is to decriminalize mental illness. Mentally dysfunctional people number 1.25 million of the 2.3 million people incarcerated in the U.S. Acute mental patients incarcerated for violent crimes should be transferred away from prisons and into secure mental hospitals. It costs no more to treat them in mental hospitals than it does to treat them in prisons. Prisons are for punishment, rehabilitation, and crime prevention. Sick people cannot be punished or rehabilitated into a state of mental health, and a secure mental hospital would serve as well as prison for crime prevention. Hospitalization for violent mentally ill offenders would be more humane and afford society equal protection compared to imprisonment. Furthermore, hospitalization would be more just, because many of those incarcerated were incapable understanding their Miranda rights or contributing to their own defense.
Most mentally ill inmates were arrested for non-violent offenses like vagrancy and drug usage. Drugs and alcohol are frequently used by people with mental health issues to self-medicate. They attempt to "get their heads on straight" without seeking professional help. Psychiatric treatment is not affordable for most, and mental health services have been reduced in communities. Once incarcerated, they often get time added to their original sentences due to their lack of ability to cooperate with rules reducing the likelihood of early paroles.
ASSISTED OUTPATIENT TREATMENT PROGRAMS FOR NON-VIOLENT OFFENDERS
In New York City, a group of offenders exiting prison were put in an ASSISTED OUTPATIENT TREATMENT PROGRAM (AOT) under KENDRA'S LAW. Kendra's Law participants were given subsistence assistance for food and housing, and they had court-ordered treatment. The choice of whether or not to accept psychiatric treatment was taken from the participants, and they thrived!
Kendra's Law participants experienced better than 85% reduction in their rates of homelessness, incarceration, and hospitalization when compared to their records three years prior to joining the program. KENDRA'S LAW WORKS, and this has already been proved. The fact that there were 85% fewer arrests among Kendra's Law participants means communities were also much safer because there was LESS CRIME.
With better than 85% success rate, why don't more municipalities apply Kendra's Law to mentally ill persons exiting prisons and mental hospitals? Legislation needs to be changed. Presently, enforced treatment is considered as being an infringement on the rights of mental patients, until there is a smoking gun or dripping knife. It could also be that Kendra's Law works TOO well. An 85% reduction in the arrests of mentally ill offenders would mean a corresponding loss in revenue to PRIVATE PRISON INVESTORS. It is more profitable to leave acute mental patients free and untreated in society and withhold provisions for their housing and food. Most untreated acute mental patients can be counted on to break the law at some point and commit crimes ranging from simple vagrancy to murder, then become prisoners.
Families of mentally challenged Americans have too little say in determinations that impact their own lives as they wrestle with mental health issues among their loved ones. Assistance to the Incarcerated Mentally Ill ("AIMI") was established to help identify and advance means for more mentally challenged persons to be successfully integrated into society and restored to wholesome living. AIMI endeavors to put forth the point of view held by human rights activists, family members, and many psychiatric patients who are directly impacted by mental health legislation. THERE IS A BETTER WAY TO ADDRESS MENTAL ILLNESS THAT IS MORE HUMANE, COST-EFFECTIVE, AND SAFER THAN IMPRISONMENT. Homelessness, prison and death must cease being America's answers to mental illness. These are currently the only options readily available for middle-class and indigent acute mental patients.
Rep. Johnson (D-TX) put forth H.R. 619 to reinstate Medicaid payments for inpatient mental health treatment, which would make long-term hospitalization available again for acute mental patients as well as short-term crisis intervention that could prevent tragedies. Assisted Outpatient Therapy programs should be immediately applied for mental patients exiting jails and hospitals. With those two changes, many families would be saved the unnecessary trauma of having their weakest members suffer incarceration for crimes they did not understand or lacked the wherewithal to avoid, and billions of dollars which presently go to imprisoning the mentally ill could be used for more constructive, humane purposes. No one can be punished or rehabilitated into a state of mental health, and hospitals for acute patients would serve better than prisons for containment and treatment.
Many famous people have or had mental illness, including scientists, entertainers, and world leaders. (See a partial list at Mary's page at the link below.) Unless they are/were wealthy, they would likely be imprisoned in solitary confinement in 21st century America at great expense to taxpayers.
Read more about AIMI's quest to decriminalize mental illness at the links below. Your feedback on this important issue is invited.
PHYSICAL INJURIES, deformities, and limitations such as blindness can be perceived easily and addressed medically, although those who are thus afflicted frequently have lifetime impairments that require ongoing treatment.Mental scars after wars and other traumatic events can also last a lifetime, and people who suffer enormous mental agony after harrowing experiences also need professional attention and special allowances for their conditions.
NO MAN LEFT BEHIND
Homeless Veterans with PTSD (Click on picture to see gallary)
People who are blind, paraplegic, or have other physical limitations usually find the public to be sympathetic to their physical handicaps, and society makes allowances to benefit those who are physically afflicted.There are laws to ensure that public buildings are wheelchair accessible.News broadcasts and many other television shows offer the option of having the printed text running at the bottom of the screen for the sake of hearing-impaired viewers, and sign language is commonly used in public meetings.Many books are available in Braille, and large libraries usually have a Braille section.Handicapped parking spaces are reserved for people with mobility issues, and these set-aside parking spaces are protected by levying heavy fines against people who use them illegally.All of this and more is done to help enable physically impaired people to function better in society.
Mental dysfunctions are not perceived with the naked eye, as physical handicaps are.After wars and traumatic events, victims of PTSD may find immediate help and sympathy among family and friends.Counselors are made available to people who live through plane crashes and other catastrophic events because everyone understands that profound tragedies can cause those affected to be mentally and emotionally scarred.People who need help adjusting after losing loved ones are encouraged to go through grief counseling.However, the outpouring of sympathy and understanding has a short timeline.
Society seemingly lacks the willingness to make long-term allowances for mentally afflicted persons' inclusion in regular society that it makes for people who are physically handicapped. Instead, people who suffer extended psychological damage are expected to "snap out of it," and "pull themselves together."Individuals who "go crazy" after falling victim to permanent psychological damage are likely to eventually be treated like most other mentally ill people in society and are eventually given the same three options:homelessness, prison, and death. That is why America's inmates and homeless population includes many veterans from the Viet Nam War, the Gulf War, and other conflicts. .
Many soldiers who saw their comrades die suffer PTSD .
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder that can develop after exposure to one or more traumatic events that threatened or caused grave physical harm.
It is a severe and ongoing emotional reaction to an extreme psychological trauma.This stressor may involve someone's actual death, a threat to the patient's or someone else's life, serious physical injury, an unwanted sexual act, or a threat to physical or psychological integrity, overwhelming psychological defenses.
In some cases it can also be from profound psychological and emotional trauma, apart from any actual physical harm. Often, however, incidents involving both things are found to be the cause.
The Obama administration announced that American troops will be withdrawn from Iraq by 2011.Our soldiers will transition back home, and many of them will be no different from the Balkan soldiers, among whom 54% were mentally damaged by their war experiences.Our soldiers who exited recent conflicts in the Middle East already have a heightened suicide rate.Additionally, many ex-military personnel, like other civilians with mental health issues, have a propensity to use drugs and alcohol in efforts to "get their heads on straight."
Two American Soldiers
By 2011, American soldiers in Iraq are coming home; 54% may suffer PTSD
Think of the rate of soldiers who are likely to be affected by PTSD according to the Balkan study:54.1%.Hopefully, a good many soldiers who transition back to the United States from Iraq by 2011 and are suffering from PTSD will avail themselves of the mental health services offered to them.The U.S. military has taken steps to increase and improve services offered.
Some returning soldiers will be able to meet society's expectations of people who have endured trauma and "pull themselves together."Some will adjust in a short amount of time to civilian life.They will have the support of family, friends, perhaps their churches and other community support.Many of the soldiers were actually in the Army Reserve, and they should be able to resume their regular employment.As time goes on, most sufferers of PTSD will experience reduced symptoms of the disorder over time, especially if they also get professional help. But what about those who don't adjust after a short time?What about our veterans who will never "bounce back"?Many will be permanently afflicted mentally.
Soldiers who are amputees or otherwise permanently handicapped during wars get lifetime benefits and are afforded all of the allowances society willingly makes to ensure the inclusion of physically handicapped persons in society:wheelchair ramps, reserved parking, special services for the hear impaired, and more.
QUESTION:What is America willing to do for veterans who are permanently scarred mentally after serving in military conflicts?Will we offer them the same pitiful outcome that is available to other chronic mental patients in America:homelessness, prison, and death?
Approximately 1.25 million mentally dysfunctional citizens (including many veterans) are currently in prison because of offenses arising out of their mental illness.Is this to be the eventual outcome for our soldiers returning from Iraq between now and 2011, also? We need a program like Kendra’s Law in place across America.Not only would Kendra's Law help our mentally challenged citizens who are in the civilian population avoid becoming prison inmates, but Kendra's Law would also help many of our veterans avoid becoming "prisoners of war" after returning home. Kendra's Law is outpatient commitment for mentally ill participants that combines subsistence assistance and mandatory treatment for mental illness.
Here is bill that has been introduced to improve mental health services to veterans of particular conflicts. One can track its progress through Congress online at http://congress.org/.
(H.R.1544) : 'To amend title 38, United States Code, to provide for unlimited eligibility for health care for mental illnesses for veterans of combat service during certain periods of hostilities and war. '
This bill is commendable and necessary to removing financial barriers to treatment for certain vets - a very important bill that needs to pass. Keep in mind, however, that such legislation will not keep veterans out of prisons or restore those who are already in prison back to freedom and wholesome living like Kendra's Law can.
Veterans suffering PTSD who break laws are subject to incarceration. Many vets are already behind bars along with 1 in every 99.1 other Americans
HIGH SUCCESS RATE: Kendra's Law program participants in New York experienced over 80% decrease in incidents of homelessness, incarcerations, and re-arrests. Over 80% proved success rate! Kendra's Law works.
Non-violent mentally ill offenders who are currently imprisoned should be immediately released under an outpatient sentencing law, such as Kendra's Law, thereby eliminating overcrowded prison conditions in one day.
We already have the remedy to the high rates of homelessness among the mentally ill, high incarceration rates, and many senseless deaths that involve psychiatric patients who are not undergoing treatment.Please call your representatives and let them know that you support Kendra's Law across America.Homelessness, prison and death must cease being America's answer to chronic mental illness.
Psychiatric patients who were sentenced to prison for violent crimes should be transferred from prisons where they are inmates to secure mental hospitals, where they would become inpatients, as they should be.They should be kept hospitalized for the length of their prison sentences, even if they were serving life without the possibility of parole.Doctors should NOT have the authority to release mental patients who committed violent crimes.That privilege should remain with the sentencing courts after the patients have been hospitalized for the minimum sentencing period according to their crimes.This would prevent many relapses among psychiatric patients that endanger patients and the community.
All psychiatric patients who commit violent crimes or nonviolent offenses and are released from prisons and mental hospitals should be mandated to participate in an outpatient commitment program like Kendra's Law - at least for the length of their parole or probationary periods.If this is done, our rates of incarceration for the mentally ill behind bars will quickly become practically nil.
Psychiatric patients and society as a whole would be safer and costs to taxpayers lower with Kendra's Law applied across the country.Give our veterans who are returning home psychologically scarred for life the help they need to avoid spending their lives homeless or as POWs in America's prisons.Insist that Kendra's Law replace homelessness, prison, and death as America's answers to chronic mental illness.
PLEASE SEND AN EMAIL TO BENEFIT OUR RETURNING TROOPS AND OUR NEIGHBORS WHO WRESTLE WITH MENTAL ILLNESS TODAY. OUR SOLDIERS DID MUCH MORE FOR US THAN SEND A SIMPLE E-MAIL. Here is a link to contact your representatives and insist on Kendra's Law today: http://www.house.gov/writerep
HOMELESSNESS, PRISON, AND DEATH MUST CEASE BEING AMERICA'S ANSWERS TO MENTAL ILLNESS. COME OUT OF THE DARK AGES! WE NEED KENDRA'S LAW TODAY.
Support mentally ill Americans, including veterans suffering PTSD today. Don't sit back and watch our veterans who voluntarily answered America's call for recruits return HOME to become POW's. Call and write your representatives today and support Kendra's Law. Replace prisons with inpatient and outpatient treatment programs for mentally ill Americans. Please send an e-mail for our vets with PTSD. They did so much more for you: http://www.house.gov/writerep.
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