In recent decades, the nation's prisons have become packed with inmates who suffer from a diagnosed mental illness. As policymakers try to reverse that trend, they're looking at an array of different options, and here in Massachusetts, that's led to increased training on how police officers should interact with mentally ill individuals.
- Dr. Debra Pinals is an associate professor of psychiatry at UMass Medical School and the former president of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law.
- Leslie Walker is the executive director of the Prisoners’ Legal Services of Massachusetts, a Boston-based nonprofit. She successfully represented a group of mentally ill inmates in a legal challenge to the use of solitary confinement.