May in the United States is Mental Health Awareness month and BAR NONE, Inc. would be remiss if we didn’t speak to the fact that millions of American’s, in particular black incarcerated women suffer from mental illnesses. Our partners True Love Movement (www.truelovemoment.com), a New Orleans based licensed counseling agency, are working to shed light & bring healing work to a population that goes overlooked all too often. This is not a competition or a way to make it seem as if one population suffers more than another.
We are clear that
1) these people are still incarcerated
2) a great number of these people come home everyday unhealthy because of not receiving proper care 3) these people are suffering
4) we need to be intentional about advocating for them to receive the necessary care 5) WE ARE THEM!
Mental illness among today’s inmates is also pervasive, with 64 percent of jail inmates, 54 percent of state prisoners and 45 percent of federal prisoners reporting mental health concerns, the report found. Substance abuse is also rampant and often co-occurring.
More than half of the white people in prison, of both sexes, reported a diagnosis of a mental disorder, nearly double the rate for Hispanics and more than 1.6 times higher than black people in prison. The numbers for those in jails were similar.
The Mental Health Crisis Facing Women in Prison A new study shows a striking disparity between incarcerated men and women. By Manuel Villa
As many as 70 percent of youth in the system are affected with a mental disorder, One one in five suffer from a mental illness so severe as to impair their ability to function as a young person and grow into a responsible adult (Mental Health Needs of Juvenile Offenders By Sarah Hammond).