Bill would aid mentally ill in crisis

Published: Friday, Jan. 17, 2014 - 1:10 pm

Re “Ex-cops acquitted in fatal beating” (Page A1, Jan. 14): Kelly Thomas’ family tried to get help for him before the police beat him to death. Laura’s Law, which authorizes courts to oversee the care of mentally ill people, would have helped him, but his county has not adopted it. A mobile crisis unit staffed with mental health professionals instead of police could have saved him, but California doesn’t use them yet. A ray of hope is the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act, introduced into Congress by Rep. Tim Murphy, R-Pa. It will encourage states to adopt laws and policies that address serious mental illness, instead of ignoring it. Tell your congressman to support this law if you want to help those like Kelly Thomas in this state. -- Mary Ann Bernard, Sacramento

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