The Mental Health Minute

Articles and news about mental health issues

Moulton: Slain woman’s family sues employer

Issues in Mental Health Nursing

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Here is an article that shows the possible outcome of the criminalization of mental health.  People who should be in prison may end up in your community for mental health rehab; people who shouldn’t be in prison may end up behind bars without treatment.

In this article from The Daily Item, the story of a mental health worker in Massachusetts pays the highest price possible for trying to care for her patients.  There is a line that needs to be established for the care of and treatment of  both the criminally insane and the mentally ill.  People everywhere should be held accountable for their actions; having a diagnosis should not excuse anyone from facing consequences of behaviors.  I don’t, however, believe that just because someone has a diagnosis, they automatically should be treated like a criminal.  There are millions of mentally ill people in all walks of life who make choices daily and live their lives according to the rules of society.  There will always be that small percentage who believe that rules do not apply and that they are not responsible for any action they may take.  You don’t have to be mentally ill to do this.  Just a sociopath.  Treatment doesn’t “fix” a sociopath.

My heart goes out to this family for the loss of their daughter.  If you read the entire article, you will see how this trangression was able to happen.  Please do click over and finish reading this article.

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By Thor Jourgensen / The Daily Item

PEABODY – The mother of slain mental health worker Stephanie Moulton has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against North Suffolk Mental Health Association, Inc., saying the agency “didn’t do anything to protect my daughter.”

Moulton, 25, was fatally stabbed in the basement of North Suffolk’s 110 Ocean Ave. group home on Jan. 20. Prosecutors arraigned home resident Deshawn Chappell, 27, on a first-degree murder charge in Suffolk Superior Court on March 25 in connection with the slaying.

Kimberly Flynn’s lawsuit on behalf of her daughter states that “as a result of Chappell’s criminal and mental health history … he was an unsafe and inappropriate person for placement” with North Suffolk.

The suit states that Chappell was placed into the Ocean Avenue group home by North Suffolk with “a long criminal record including but not limited to charges of multiple assaults, weapons violations, robbery” and other charges.

“She was left alone with a man who had a criminal record,” Flynn said, adding North Suffolk’s managers and directors “were responsible and had to be aware” of Chappell’s record.

North Suffolk Chief Executive Officer Jackie Moore declined on Thursday to discuss Flynn’s lawsuit.

“Our policy is not to comment on matters in litigation. Our thoughts and prayers remain with Stephanie and her family,” Moore said.

The suit filed by attorney Barry Feinstein of Peabody names 21 North Suffolk employees, including members of the agency’s board of directors, and two doctors, who, according to the suit, “provided services” to North Suffolk.

The lawsuit states agency directors “negligently failed to set and enforce policies necessary to protect…[read more here]

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April 22, 2011 - Posted by | Mental Health | , , , ,

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