Criminal Justice Issues
People with disabilities are landing in North Carolina prisons, jails and juvenile correction facilities at an alarming rate. Mental illness is criminalized. This means N.C. Department of Public Safety confines more people with serious mental illness than are treated in our largest psychiatric hospital. Today 19% of the prison population is identified as needing mental health treatment – about 6,000 people. And there are many people in our prisons and jails with disabilities who are not treated or accommodated. There are only 250 people are identified with an IDD (out of 35,000) and there is no screening for a Traumatic Brain Injury. Last year prison leaders reported that 70% of people in NC prisons have a substance use disorder or a dual treatment need for substance use and mental health. Every juvenile in the Youth Development Centers was needing treatment for a disability.