Chatter about Roseanne Barr's racist tweet is taking up far more space in our collective culture than, say, the murder of any one black or brown person by police in our country. If we want to shine light on the relationship between psychiatry and racism, let’s turn our attention to the people getting overlooked. People like Dontre Hamilton, whose death was the focus of the documentary ‘The Blood is at The Doorstep.’
Colorado police trained in crisis intervention infrequently use force or arrest individuals experiencing a mental health crisis and are likely to transfer individuals to a treatment facility.
According to an analysis by the Washington Post, “On average, police shot and killed someone who was in mental crisis every 36 hours in the first six months of this year.” Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum called it “a national crisis.” “We have to get American police to rethink how they handle encounters with the mentally ill. Training has to change.”