PRISON IS NOT THE ANSWER by Tama Bell

I was told, by New York State mental health officials, to allow my son to commit a crime and then he'd get help for his mental illness through the prison system. My son didn't get help in prison. As a matter of fact, he was beaten and placed in solitary confinement which made his condition worse. He never could be around large groups of people, whether in school or in a mall or in the general population in prison. But being in complete isolation for 3 continuous months almost killed him. We're still dealing with his horrendous PTSD, and how that affects his psychotic/bipolar condition and his delusions.

My son was tortured in prison. Prison is not the answer. We, as a whole, as a collective, must demand that our loved ones be treated before tragedy. We must be given the ability to advocate and help our loved ones when they're unable to help themselves.

One of the ways I've found to be an effective mental illness advocate is to bring our plight to the media. Through a social justice group, someone gave me a name: Brave New Films. They produced a three-part series which I was in, for a minute. Watch the whole thing. People are beginning to wake up.

To view Tama and the film, click on the link below:
This is Crazy: Criminalizing Mental Health

BRAVENEWFILMS.ORG

Photo Credit: Peg1104 Flickr.com

Photo Credit: Peg1104
Flickr.com