CIT in Action
NAMI Releases Guide to Help Re-entering Prisoners Succeed
Returning to the community after prison is especially challenging for people living with mental illness. Our new re-entry guide walks you through getting health care, ID, housing, benefits and other necessities to help you succeed. READ MORE
Ask A Cop: What to do in a Crisis if Your Community Doesn’t have CIT
If you have to call the police in a crisis, the key to a safe outcome is sharing information upfront with the officer. Our experts provide tips for managing this stressful situation. READ MORE
Working with Your Probation or Parole Officer
People living with mental illness can struggle with the conditions of probation and parole. Fortunately, specialized probation officers like Eilene Flory can help individuals succeed. READ MORE
Getting Health Coverage in the Justice System
Every year, almost 12 million Americans are caught up in the criminal justice system. The new health law can help many of them get the health coverage needed to stay well and get out of the justice system. READ MORE
Veterans Treatment Courts: What You Need to Know
Special courts designed to address the needs of veterans with mental health and substance conditions are spreading all over the country. Learn the basics and find out whether there’s a court in your community. READ MORE
New Fact Sheet on the Prison Rape Elimination Act
Sexual assault is all too common in jails and prisons and prisoners with mental illness are at very high risk. This fall, a law designed to help goes into effect. READ MORE
NAMI Criminal Justice Webpage Gets a New Look
NAMI’s criminal justice webpage has been updated with new information and a new look. The page features a section to help individuals and families navigate the justice system. It also describes our position on the big issues in criminal justice, like gun reporting laws, the death penalty and tasers. Finally, the site highlights the many local programs that make a difference for people with mental illness involved in the justice system and honors the NAMI Affiliates and criminal justice agencies that are changing their communities. Email Laura Usher with comments or suggestions.
NEWS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
Come to the CIT Conference and Celebrate 25 Years of CIT
The 2013 CIT Conference is Oct. 14-16 in Hartford, CT. Join NAMI members, CIT officers, criminal justice professionals, mental health providers and advocates from around the country in celebrating 25 years of CIT. The conference will feature national leaders in CIT, and give you a chance to see New England while networking with colleagues. Registration rates go up on Sept. 15, so register online today!
NAMI Maryland Hosts Statewide Training for Campus Police
Campus police across the state of Maryland received basic training in recognizing mental illness from NAMI Maryland this week. The initiative, which grew out of a partnership with Towson University, will reach officers on eight campuses. Learn more in this Washington Post article.
New System Will Help Justice Involved Veterans Reenter Communities
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recently created a database designed to help provide veterans leaving prison with reentry services. The Veterans Reentry Search Service is a web based system containing information about the 30 million individuals who have served in the United States Armed Forces. The system will help corrections agencies identify veterans under their supervision and will allow the VA to reach out to provide reentry services, and the benefits that they have earned leading up to and upon release. The system is currently being pilot-tested in Maryland, California and Iowa corrections facilities.
Cook County Sheriff Dart Creates Mental Health Helpline for Inmates and Families
In an innovative move meant to address the needs of people cycling repeatedly through the Cook County Jail, Sheriff Dart has created a 24 hour mental health helpline. Advocates manning the line will help people who have been released from jail get access to medication and services and will help families communicate about inmates’ mental health needs. The sheriff’s office estimates that it houses 3000 inmates with mental illness on a given day. Read more in the Southtown Star.