Op-Ed: Changes Needed To Reduce Police Shootings Of People With Mental Illnesses.

In an opinion piece in the New York Times (6/21, A21, Subscription Publication), Phillip Atiba Goff, president of the Center for Policing Equity, and Kim Shayo Buchanan, senior academic writer at that same center, write in wake of the recent Seattle police shooting of Charleena Lyles, a pregnant woman with mental illness, “People with untreated mental illnesses are disproportionately likely to attract police attention.” In particular, “the combination of mental illness, racial segregation and poverty is…likely to result in police contact, often leading to arrest.”

Over the past five decades, however, the US “has seen a stunning decline in resources devoted to public mental health.” Goff and Buchanan conclude, “The cure for these too frequent police-involved shootings must include serious changes within law enforcement” coupled with a recommitment “to changing how we manage mental health if we are to reduce the chances that illness will be treated with gunshots.”

Related Links:

— “Charleena Lyles Needed Health Care. Instead, She Was Killed.,” PHILLIP ATIBA GOFF and KIM SHAYO BUCHANAN, New York Times, June 20, 2017.

Posted in In The News.