States’ Budget Crises Cut Deeply Into Mental Health Programs
(New York Times) — Unlike many of her fellow governors, Jan Brewer of Arizona knows well the inner workings of her state’s mental health system: her son has schizophrenia and was committed to a state hospital more than 20 years ago after being found not guilty by reason of insanity of sexual assault and kidnapping. Although she rarely speaks of her son’s crisis, Ms. Brewer has long been an advocate for the mental health system, pushing for state money for drugs and community programs. But with Arizona and other states across the country facing huge budget holes, Ms. Brewer and many of her fellow governors in both parties are presiding over what is being described as a dismantling of the safety net for the mentally ill.