Forum examines where mental health, law enforcement intersect 論壇檢視心理衛生與執法機構交錯之處
Mental illness – whether developmental or caused by drug abuse, PTSD or dementia – has reached a crisis point on both sides of the state line with law enforcement often on the front lines.
"Research indicates up to 25 percent of people killed by law enforcement officers suffer from some mental illness. In many cases law enforcement officers are not properly trained to deal with mentally ill subjects, and this lapse in training often results in injuries or deaths of subjects and officers," said Lake County Sheriff John Buncich during Tuesday’s round table discussion.
"The Lake County Jail currently houses approximately 700 inmates and at any given time 30 to 50 percent of our inmate population are mentally ill," Buncich said, adding that Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart has that same percentage of mental illness among Cook County Jail’s 10,000 inmates.
"We have spent $2 million to put in a modern, state-of-the-art mental health facility with about 40 psychiatrists, psychologists and other mental health professionals, but we can’t keep up with it," Buncich said.