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NCJ Number: 211868 Find in a Library
Title: Mad or Bad: Reflections on the Mental Health System's Responsibility for Mentally Disordered Offenders
Journal: Justice Report  Volume:20  Issue:4  Dated:Fall 2005  Pages:7-9
Author(s): Steve Lurie MSW
Date Published: 2005
Page Count: 3
Type: Literature Review
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: Canada
Annotation: Through an examination of past research studies and surveys, this paper discusses how and why clients/offenders with mental disorders in Canada are primarily served by the criminal justice system, as opposed to the mental health system and what is the response of the mental health system.
Abstract: Until 1992, the term forensic patient in Canada generally applied to persons living with mental illness who had committed serious criminal offenses. However, now at least one-third of forensic patients under the supervision of a hospital designated under the criminal code have committed non-violent offenses. Today, forensic programs serve less than 15 percent of people with mental illness who are before the courts. Between 2001 and 2002, clients with mental disorders before the Toronto, Canada courts increased from 1,800 to 2,361. Most clients before the courts were served primarily by the justice system and not by the mental health system. Mental health providers consider these clients to be forensic clients and feel they cannot provide services due to the risk the clients pose. On the other-hand, the justice system sees these clients as mentally disordered offenders, some of which cannot be managed in the general correctional setting. Through past research surveys and studies, this paper addresses reasons for why there is such an increase in the need to provide services to the mentally ill offender in both the mental health and justice systems and what is the mental health system’s responsibility to these mentally disordered offenders.
Main Term(s): Mentally ill offenders
Index Term(s): Canada; Mental disorders; Mental health; Mentally ill inmates; Offender mental health services; Psychologists role in corrections; Special needs offenders
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