John Monahan, CEO of Greater Trenton Behavioral Healthcare in Trenton, NJ, is a leader in New Jersey’s mental health field. He has written a fine editorial in his local Trenton Times, entitled “Mental Illness Should Not Be The Scapegoat For Violence”. For his editorial and his leadership we commend Mr. Monahan. He is right: the issue of violence is not about mental illness per se. Those with mental illness who commit violence are a small minority—and who usually have one tragic fact in common: lack of sufficient (or any) treatment.
To reduce violence, especially gun violence, society would be far better served by concentrating on urban gang warfare and continuing “stop and frisk” policies. To reduce the small percentage of violence by those with serious mental illness, we should get them not unconstitutionally listed in some national registry, but earlier and better assessed and into treatment at more good community mental health agencies like Greater Trenton Behavioral Health.
Above all, let’s also keep all the facts in view—and in perspective. From our own research, here are 10 important points that PsychOdyssey has learned about violence and mental illness:… [Read more]
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