BK Reader: Marinda van Dalen Interviewed Regarding the Failures of City’s Mental Health Crisis ResponseDecember 16, 2022
“To do anything less than connect these individuals with the care and support they need is cruel and heartless and only displays the lack of willingness to actually support suffering New Yorkers. We must break this cycle that has shuffled people experiencing homelessness back and forth between the streets and an emergency room, unconnected to care, and we must stop choosing to ignore people in need of help until they fall into serious or imminent danger… What we’ve seen is that when police respond to people experiencing crises, they escalate the situation and what people need when they are in those circumstances are people who are able to de-escalate the situation. A person will end up handcuffed against their will, tightly strapped to a gurney, transported to a hospital and it may take hours or even days for them to be evaluated by a psychiatrist … This isn’t the way to solve these problems.” – Marinda van Dalen, Senior Attorney, Disability and Health Justice, NYLPI
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