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Florida Spends Millions to Teach Mentally Ill How to Appear in Court and be Convicted

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posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 08:39 PM
Wonder who is making money off of this one? A program that spends an average of over 53k a person so that they can be convicted to prison instead of a mental health facility.

You can bet most of that 53K per person is going to someone's pocket who is a political donor. Prison industrial complex example for sure.

Florida’s system for preparing mentally ill defendants for criminal court is “the definition of insanity,” according to a former state Cabinet officer.

Each year, the state spends at least $50 million coaching those with mental health issues on how to appear in court so that they can be deemed competent to stand trial. The cost per patient averages $53,000, according to an investigation by the Sarasota Herald-Tribune and Tampa Bay Times.

For this investment, the result usually is a conviction, though most nonviolent offenders never spend a day in prison.

They do wind up spending weeks, sometimes months, in mental hospitals getting medicated and coached while living among violent offenders. What they don’t get is “therapy or long-term support to help them manage their illnesses,”

edit on 26-12-2015 by infolurker because: (no reason given)

edit on Mon Dec 28 2015 by DontTreadOnMe because: trimmed overly long quote IMPORTANT: Using Content From Other Websites on ATS

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 08:44 PM
This is just wrong.
Sly demonisation and up front neglect.

This should be illegal.

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 08:47 PM

originally posted by: CharlieSpeirs
This is just wrong.
Sly demonisation and up front neglect.

This should be illegal.

I agree. Florida can be using the money to for better reasons. Like helping mentally ill people acquiring jobs and housing.

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 08:55 PM
Yup, that sounds like madness to me.

But, it is Florida... So pretty much part for the course.

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 08:58 PM
Florida should change it's motto to : "Welcome to the land of WTF".

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 09:00 PM
Jails have just became a place where they put the mentally ill, which the state refuses to help. Sure it would cost less to just address there mental illness and treat that... But politically, the voters are more than happy to pay whatever it takes to just lock people away in some brutal place, but there not interested in paying half as much to treat the person for there mental instability... Its a sick and short sighted world out there... What else can you say?

Go ask any half intelligent person that 's been to jail, they'll tell you that its packed with people who are just mentally ill and do not belong in jail!!!

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 09:11 PM
Hmm... I wonder if that money could be diverted to actually partially fund regional mental health treatment and counseling centers in conjunction with county and Federal grant spending? Oh well. Many of these people would probably be homeless on the street fighting each other if not in custody. Maybe its safer for them to be remanded into custody in the mean time to avoid those scenarios?

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 09:14 PM
I had a one time detainment when the County decided to "pick up the charges" for a minor family related incident....I had been living with high functioning schizoaffective bi-polar for well over a decade and tranced out one day and involuntarily slapped my mother while in a fugue state.

It was my first - AND ONLY - act of aggression.
My parents were helpless to overturn the responding officer's "decision".

My parents made the mistake of calling 911 to request a transfer to an inpatient facility for medication evaluation and treatment as I was not acting - (by any stretch of the imagination) - "normally". The responding officer took one look at my parents homestead and assumed we had money. He wrote me up on aggravated assault charges and they threw me in a "violent confinement" rubber room with no bathroom facilities for a week while I was still nonverbal, childlike and confused to the tune of $30,000 (yes, you read that right) bail.

No one spoke to me during the ride there or through the entire booking process. I was left alone for a week after given an unknown psychotropic that caused a terrifying epileptic response. No one checked in on me other than an occasional peek through the sheet of paper taped over the front of the cell window to "observe" and a few undue rude comments. Those sadists probably enjoyed everything from the CCTV footage.

No toilet facilities, freezing cold, no sink and no blanket.
I didn't know how to work the intercom because I was so dissociated.

A week later they haul me before an in-jail judge and he asked:

"Do you understand the nature of the charges against you?"

I was so over-stressed from whatever medication they gave me, the constant 24/7 overhead light and social isolation (and still having fugue symptoms) that I glanced up in a bit of an angry state from what I had been subjected to up to that point, and before I had a chance to check myself respond politely and honestly that I did not, the Judge made up his own mind and sent me back to that room without another word.

I spent 2 and a half months in there with no human contact...while hallucinating visually and aurally.

The three "psychologists" they came to interview me during that time never spoke to me or asked any questions.

I still suffer serious anger issues over this and have frequent flashbacks of things that happened during my fugue in that room. No lawyer will touch my case. Statue of Limitation has long since expired over 12 years later.

So this news article you think is so horrible?

Trivial compared to the realities of what happens to those of us who know right from wrong, are mental patients and NOT repeat offenders. At least repeat offenders are given nicer accommodations 90% of the time, an if they're not, well, I suggest you get more involved in your local detention centers and mental health facilities than worrying about Florida's management.

In case you haven't noticed, there's a lot more going on out there than the Mainstream news will even touch on.

But no one listens to us because we're "crazy" "delusional" or "off our medications", remember?

We're not VIABLE HUMAN BEINGS, we're "donation fodder" and "tax write offs" and "free funding".

At least Florida is making a step forward with the reality of things some people go through as Mental Patients.

Drug offenders and mentally competent offenders have it easier and with more leniency.

If nothing else, maybe this post will open some eyes to reality.

Godspeed - Godbless.
I'm out.

edit on 12/26/15 by GENERAL EYES because: it's me know...formatting again. perfection is a burden.

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 09:27 PM
a reply to: infolurker

The saying "the lunatics have taken over the asylum" rings true when you hear this kind of madness ...

Another great example of the mismanagement of money that could be used for good instead of evil...

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 09:32 PM
a reply to: hopenotfeariswhatweneed

No kidding, right?

With that kind of money that could be one step closer to a modern state of the art care facility for chronic patients.

You know, with fenced outdoor privileges and nature even.

It's like Bedlam all over again out there.

edit on 12/26/15 by GENERAL EYES because: darn...formatting....thing

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 09:35 PM

originally posted by: Teddy916

originally posted by: CharlieSpeirs
This is just wrong.
Sly demonisation and up front neglect.

This should be illegal.

I agree. Florida can be using the money to for better reasons. Like helping mentally ill people acquiring jobs and housing.
As someone who has seen what happens to the mentally ill in the justice system, it is just sad. The mentally ill need to be taught how to deal with society not prison life.
I agree about helping the mentally ill with getting work and housing. Sometimes they can't work or can only work a little bit.
Many mentally ill need help with the very basics, like hygiene and household chores.
I believe that many mental health hospitals closed down in the 90's. We need them back.
In high school, I was put in a very good mental hospital for well, smoking something herbal. It was surprising how many of my classmates and peers had checked theirselves in and it was an excellent place with no weird stuff that was present in the not so distant past(1930's-even the80's).
I remember reading about how poor the quality of mental health services are in prisons, it is a shame that there aren't enough resources to help mentally ill people with just daily basics, like taking their meds and hygiene.
It's one of the things that if I ever win big in the lotto, I'll start some sort of charity for the mentally ill in the justice system.
I'm not familiar with sending letters to senators, but thanks for the OP because now I have a new years resolution to start trying my damnedest to do something about this issue! I have someone in my life who has been put through the ringer with being mentally ill in the justice system and just the whole system in general for most of his life. He needs to take his meds but most important he needs therapy, some one qualified to talk through issues with him. It's sad that for low income people all a psychiatrist does is prescribe meds.

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 09:47 PM
a reply to: GENERAL EYES Thank you for sharing your experience.
I have been diagnosed with the same thing, but never had to experience anything so horrid and have seen people in my life with mental illness not treated kindly in the justice system and I fully agree that we need more care facilities for the mentally ill.
My heart goes out to you that you should have such a memory of mistreatment, you didn't deserve that.
God bless you and may the new year bring you all the warmth and kindness of the heavenly angels.

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 09:55 PM
Land of the free and home of the braaaaave.

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 10:10 PM
a reply to: peppycat

Thank you and Peace to you and yours as well.
God Bless.

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 10:11 PM

originally posted by: PLAYERONE01
Land of the free and home of the braaaaave.

But in reality, its the land of the rich and home to the privileged... Everyone else is on there own.

There's no second chances if you don't have the money to pay your way out of it... Its capitalism on steroids!

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 10:27 PM
I've been analyzing the overall situation for a long time now....there are some communities in Europe that are extremely well adjusted to the needs and integration of those members of the community with mental health issues.

Parks, gardens, artist gatherings...all therapeutic and much more beneficial to the overall mental health of a chronic and non-violent group than being confined to a closed ward - which in all respects, speaking from one who has visited many an inpatient facility over the years...actually can aggravate certain conditions like severe depression and dissocative psychotics.

Gradual acclimation and positive environment works wonders.

With the advent of the internet, many chronic cases can stay in the comfort of their own homes and socialize. I know it's helped me immensely having these tools, but I'm also a highly social and outdoorsy person, and after my extreme isolation, I tend to get claustrophobic and need some fresh air and exercise a lot more than some.

Our local Community Counseling Center has a day-treatment program where we can drop in and socialize, go on outings with therapists and trained specialists, and the community here is quite respectful as we all know how hard it can be out ther ein the "real world" regardless of one's walk of life.

Sadly, there is still the Bedlam element sometimes of curiosity seekers harassing individuals on solitary outings, but the local police force is aware of it's community and we're small enough that no one is homeless without care or assistance for long - from various local charities and churches to just the kindness of strangers - we look out for one another as extended Family in every way we are able.

If these simple and elementary principles are working in other places (smaller towns/communities) it's proof positive that this isn't a losing battle. There is a Light at the end of this temporary tunnel.

Mental Illness isn't exclusive to the poor and impoverished and uneducated.

The idea here is that what benefits the Least Among Us, benefits the Greater Overall Collective.

A properly sized safe day-treatment center for higher functioning patients, complete with job training if the client is able and ready, education ranging from learning to read to art therapy programs and coping skills and social space can do wonders for the majority of case management issues.

Reduced crime and reduced crisis.
One step at a time.
The key is informative education at the local level.

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 10:56 PM
a reply to: GENERAL EYES

There does not seem to be any care to where those who fall through the cracks end up,in fact there seems to be an effort to demonise them as useless and deserving of their fate like it is their own fault.....

That bedlam will only increase the way things are headed.....

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 10:56 PM
Wow they aimed low on this one, I can imagine a time when the Corps see these kind of socio economically challenged demographics as potential fodder in organ trading.

This thing we call the "Human Race" has been run and we lost it some decades back, time for a reset I say and time for the Corporations/Governments ( same thing now ) to be wound up and the criminals at the top executed so they can't be allowed to manifest somewhere else down the track and pollute the gene pool.

posted on Dec, 26 2015 @ 11:06 PM
A few years ago, Florida passed a law for everyone applying for food stamps needed a drug test. About 50 people were busted the first year. It cost millions of dollars to save a few thousand dollars.

the governor's wife owned the drug testing company.

(facts are sketchy, but this is the general story)

posted on Dec, 27 2015 @ 12:26 AM
It looks like the same program they taught when I was in college for criminal justice. Lol what they taught there was disgusting, the only class that made sense was from a state cop forensic agent working in forgery.

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