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Noelle E. Fearn

In: Corrections

Chapter 12: Mentally Ill and Mentally Challenged Inmates

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Mentally Ill and Mentally Challenged Inmates
Mentally ill and mentally challenged inmates

Challenges regarding how to respond to the increased number of criminal offenders and inmates with mental illnesses (and also those suffering from mental retardation/developmental disability) have confronted criminal justice and corrections officials since the widespread deinstitutionalization of mentally ill individuals in the 1960s. Attributed both to the public outcry against the dismal and inhumane conditions of state mental hospitals and the advancement of medications to respond to various mental illnesses, the 1960s witnessed a mass exodus of the mentally ill from these mental health facilities into U.S. communities. Unfortunately, without the structure and professional/medical oversight of the mental institution and its staff, many of these mentally ill individuals were confronted with, among other serious ...

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