The insanity offense : how America's failure to treat the seriously mentally ill endangers its citizens / by E. Fuller Torrey.Material type: BookPublisher: New York ; London : W.W. Norton, 2012Description: xvi, 284 pages : illustrations ; 21 cm.Content type: text Media type: unmediated Carrier type: volumeISBN: 9780393341379; 0393341372.Subject(s): Mental health services -- United States -- Evaluation | Mentally ill -- Deinstitutionalization -- United States | Mentally ill -- Commitment and detention -- United States | Dangerously mentally ill -- United States | Mental health laws -- United States | Dangerously mentally ill | Mental health laws | Mental health services -- Evaluation | Mentally ill -- Commitment and detention | Mentally ill -- Deinstitutionalization | United StatesDDC classification: 362.19689
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Includes bibliographical references and index.
Introduction : the origins of a disaster -- Death by the roadside -- Thirteen murders to prevent an earthquake -- "The odds are still in society's favor" -- The killing of three devils -- The sad legacy of Ms. Lessard -- God does not take medication -- The consequences of unconstrained civil liberties : homeless, incarcerated, and victimized -- The consequences of unconstrained civil liberties : violent and homicidal -- An imperative for change -- Fixing the system -- Coda : death by the roadside -- Epilogue : tragedy in Tucson.
"Beginning in the 1960s in the United States, scores of patients with severe psychiatric disorders were discharged from public mental hospitals. At the same time, activists forced changes in commitment laws that made it impossible to treat half of the patients that left the hospital. The combined effect was profoundly destructive. Today, among homeless persons, at least one-third are severely mentally ill; among the incarcerated, at least one-tenth. Of those individuals living in our communities, many are the victims of violent crime. Other untreated individuals commit crimes, including murder and assault. Here, advocate Torrey takes full stock of this phenomenon, exploring the causes and consequences as he weaves together narratives of individual tragedies in three states with sobering national data on our failure to treat the mentally ill. In the book's final chapters, Torrey outlines what needs to be done to reverse this ongoing--and accelerating--disaster"--Publisher description.