Nearly two-thirds of juveniles in America’s prisons are mentally ill and that number is likely to rise as cash-strapped states cut back on mental health services.

More than 30 states cut their mental health programs this year. And while offenders with mental illness are not new to the justice system, their numbers appear to be soaring as treatment options become more limited. There are reports of parents and caregivers giving up custody of children to the juvenile justice system so that they can get treatment.

Records rarely follow individuals to jail, meaning that the few doctors and therapists working with inmates have little to go on in order to form a diagnosis or treat an individual. Especially troubling is the fact that mental illness often gets worse when people are locked up. And with little treatment, inmates often act out, prolonging their sentences, reports The New York Times. To read more click here.

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