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Sunday, December 7, 2008

Texas Hates the Mentally Ill

Not only does Texas routinely murder the mentally ill and incompetent, it has come to light that of those it allows to live, many are routinely beaten, neglected, and sexually abused. For the third time in as many years, criticisms of Texas' handling of the mentally ill have reached the Justice Department, which found the state in violation of mentally ill patients' Constitutional rights.

Investigators discovered that last year alone, dozens of mentally ill patients died from avoidable conditions. Countless others suffered neglect and abuse at the hands of orderlies and administrators. "In Texas, it's like a time warp," said one advocate.

Texas remains stubbornly attached to the idea of large, impersonal, and poorly-maintained group homes for the mentally ill, which it calls "state schools." The 13 "state schools" in Texas house about 5000 patients each - more than six times the national average, and has almost twice the number of housed patients per capita.

According to the AP, government entities are "all but immune" to lawsuits. Only lawmakers can close the "state schools" where the mentally ill are warehoused and viciously abused on a regular basis by drug-addled employees. They are reticent to do so because the "schools" employ so many people.

© C Harris Lynn, 2008

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