Policy News

Mental Health


TIMELINE RELATED TO THE INDEPENDENT ASSESSMENT OF THE CHILDREN'S MENTAL HEALTH SYSTEM

The Independent Assessment is a study on children's mental health services conducted by Boston-based Technical Assistance Collaborative, a nonprofit organization with extensive experience in the area of mental health.  It was completed as one of the conditions of the Justice Department forgoing suing Mississippi as delineated in this letter.

The timeline that follows describes what has happened with this assessment.

 

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TIMELINE EXPLAINING MENTAL HEALTH LAWSUITS

Mental Health – The State of Mississippi, the Division of Medicaid and the Department of Mental Health are being sued for discriminating against citizens with mental illness.  The timeline below details these legal actions.

 

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Education


RESTRAINT AND SECLUSION

Information on the Mississippi Department of Education (MDE) Restraint and seclusion policy, including a joint letter from a number of organizations including Families as Allies, the current MDE restraint and seclusion policy and a US Department of Education resource booklet.

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Child Welfare


OLIVIA Y. LAWSUIT

Olivia Y., et al. v. Barbour, et al.
(Civil Action No.3:04CV251LN)

Olivia Y. was filed in March 2004 in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi, Jackson, Division, against the Governor of Mississippi, the Executive Director of the Department of Human Services, and the Director of the MDHS, Division of Family and Children’s Services, all in their official capacities. This case alleged that Mississippi’s foster care system was failing to adequately protect children in its custody and provide necessary services in violation of their federal constitutional rights. This lawsuit sought only court-ordered changes in the system; money damages were never at issue. (this info taken from MDHS website)

All of the subsequent actions taken regarding this suit are listed on the MDHS website.



Juvenile Justice


The_School-to-Prison_Pipeline_Time_to_Shut_it_Down_-_NEA_Today-1.jpgTHE SCHOOL TO PRISON PIPELINE:
TIME TO SHUT IT DOWN

(ARTICLE COURTESY OF neaTODAY, NEWS AND FEATURES FROM THE NATIONAL EDUCATION ASSOCIATION)

Years ago, James Duran didn’t think too much before suspending students who came to his office with stories of swearing at teachers, disrupting class, or even arriving late to school.

“I can tell you that I was suspending upwards of 300 kids a year. And I’ll tell you, I’ll admit it, that’s just what we did in schools. We suspended kids,” says Duran, the veteran dean of discipline at Skinner Middle School in Denver. “Looking back, it was a big cop-out. Basically it just gave kids permission not to be in school.”



Families as Allies is funded through generous donations, training fees, grants from the Substance Abuse and Mental Heath Services Administration, the City of Jackson and the Department of Mental Health, and contracts with other non-profits and agencies.