Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

Mental health care

Mental health care

  • depart comm police

    NYPD response (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayoral Photo Office)


    The police must stop killing people of color. The police must stop killing people experiencing mental health crises. The police must stop killing people of color experiencing mental health crises. And the police must stop the cover-ups. 

    Daniel Prude, a Black man experiencing a mental health crisis, should never have been asphyxiated in the middle of the street on a snowy night, naked, begging and praying for help, held down and “hooded” with a bag over his head by seven Rochester police officers.

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  • tour linc cm

    Health care by video has increased in importance (photo: Jeff Reed/City Council)


    When we first met Alice two years ago, she suffered from schizophrenia, depression, uncontrolled diabetes, hypertension, and high cholesterol. Even though we set up pill boxes for her and arranged home health aides, she chose to seek treatment only in emergency rooms. Her health continued to deteriorate. 

    Last year, Alice finally began to engage in treatment for her diabetes by phone, but her nurse practitioner provided this treatment on her own time, without government funding. Alice’s

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  • police shooting

    Questioning one role of the NYPD (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)


    The protests that have erupted across American cities in response to the murder of George Floyd, together with the larger movement for Black lives, have amplified advocates’ calls to defund the police and reallocate resources toward services that would better meet the needs of Black Americans and over-policed communities nationwide. 

    New York City’s police budget alone surpasses its spending on housing, hospitals, youth services, and homeless services combined. In response to public outcry,

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  • kingsboro

    Kingsboro Psychiatric Center (photo: New York State Office of Mental Health)


    The death toll from the novel coronavirus at state psychiatric facilities is rising, according to what scant official figures are available, hinting at a nightmare unfolding inside some of New York's least visible institutions. In just over a week, the number of residents confirmed to have died from the virus has tripled, according to data provided by the state Office of Mental Health (OMH), which runs the 23 centers.

    Thirty residents are dead and another seven are suspected to have died

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  • hospital pano

    Manhattan Psychiatric Center, Wards Island (photo: @nicknormal via Flickr)


    Ten people have died of coronavirus and another 193 have tested positive among the nearly 3,500 residents living in state-run inpatient psychiatric facilities, according to officials, making them one of the hardest hit institutional settings per capita in New York State. Another 283 staff that work at the state's 23 centers have tested positive for COVID-19, which has killed well over 13,000 people across the state.

    After inquiries, the information was provided to Gotham Gazette on

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  • 1 cm carlina rivera baruch

    (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    As the coronavirus outbreak causes more and more health, social, and economic damage, many New Yorkers need help. Below is a guide to some available resources (please let us know if there’s something we should add).

    For updates from New York City about the pandemic, you can text the word “COVID” to 692-692, or “COVIDESP” to 692-692 for the same notifications in Spanish. 

    Unemployment Insurance
    If you lost your job due to the coronavirus outbreak and its fallout,

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  • first lady deputy mayors comm

    Chirlane McCray, leader of ThriveNYC (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    First Lady Chirlane McCray’s signature mental health initiative ThriveNYC has faced withering criticism for spending hundreds of millions of dollars with few concrete results to show for it. But amid increasing scrutiny the de Blasio administration is seeking to put those concerns to rest as the Office of ThriveNYC for the first time releases detailed data tracking the outcomes of dozens of programs that have been launched under the Thrive

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  • Cuomo kids health

    (photo: the Governor's Office)


    Rates of youth suicide are climbing across the country. New York State, where youth suicide is the second leading cause of death for adolescents, is no exception. With adequate investment in mental health and substance use services for children and adolescents, many of these deaths could be prevented. Yet, New York is planning to further reduce access to these kind of behavioral health services for children, even as more than half of children across the state with a mental or behavioral health condition do not receive the treatment

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  • Rikers Island inmate detainee

    (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    In an historic vote last month, the New York City Council approved the plan to close the Rikers Island jail complex and replace it with four borough-based jails by 2026. When the Council voted through the plan, estimated at $8.7 billion in new construction costs, it also announced, with Mayor Bill de Blasio, a $391-million package of citywide and community investments in criminal justice reforms and initiatives to responsibly accelerate the reduction of the city’s jail population.

    For city officials, one

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  • first lady chirl mcc first

    Chirlane McCray on Rikers Island (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    A rising number of 911 calls to report emotionally disturbed persons, several fatal encounters between police officers and people with serious mental illness, and an increasing percentage of seriously mentally ill people among those detained in city jails have all raised questions about how New York City and State provide care for those suffering from the most serious mental illnesses.

    These questions and concerns don’t have easy answers. The city’s public

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  • first lady chirlane mccray host convo across

    (photo: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office)


    Five leaders in criminal justice and mental health discussed wide-ranging options to keep seriously mentally ill people out of the prison system during a panel discussion held by the Greenburger Center for Social and Criminal Justice last week at Baruch College. Two out-of-state panelists, from Arizona and Florida, elaborated on initiatives in their states that have not made it to New York.

    The discussion took place just a week after the New York City Council ...

  • first lady chirlane mcray deputy mayors comm

    Chirlane McCray (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Following repeated criticism about spending hundreds of millions of dollars with unclear outcomes, ThriveNYC, First Lady Chirlane McCray’s signature mental health initiative, is now publishing nearly 100 metrics to track the performance of dozens of programs that have been launched in the last three years.

    The metrics, provided to

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  • council comm cj

    Elizabeth Ford of Health + Hospitals, left, & Becky Scott of DOC (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    City Council members on Monday held an oversight hearing to examine how New York prevents formerly incarcerated mentally ill persons from returning to jail. The hearing made clear that the de Blasio administration, Health + Hospitals public hospital system, and City Council members all want to reduce the number of mentally ill persons who rely on the jail system for their mental health care and keep those with serious mental illness out of jail

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  • thrivenyc dayofaction

    Chirlane McCray (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    Questions have been raised recently about the cost and achievements of the ThriveNYC mental health initiative. This is no surprise: big, high-profile, efforts like ThriveNYC have always been susceptible to such criticisms.

    But ThriveNYC is just the unifying umbrella of more than 40 different pilot programs attempting to deliver innovative mental health interventions across multiple city agencies. Organizing these disparate efforts into one initiative helped get resources for

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  • whats the data point


    What's The [Data] Point? Episode 71 -- 1,112,975, with Dr. Mitchell Katz, president of NYC Health + Hospitals [You can download What's The [Data] Point? wherever you get your podcasts, including on iTunes]

    artworks 000515225592 2py301 t500x500Dr. Mitchell Katz is in charge of the city's public hospital system, which includes 11 hospitals and dozens of other facilities

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  • whats the data point


    What's The [Data] Point? Episode 61 - 2,268, 'Deinstitutionalization' in New York, with Stephen Eide of the Manhattan Institute [You can download What's The [Data] Point? wherever you get your podcasts, including on iTunes]

    wtdp stephen eide

    Stephen Eide, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, is the author of ...

  • govcuomo pr

    Puerto Rico (photo via the governor's office)


    The physical damage caused by Hurricane Maria on the island of Puerto Rico was undoubtedly devastating. Fortunately, homes and buildings can, have been, and will be rebuilt, but it’s often trauma from these natural disasters that leaves the most lasting and destructive mark on a community.

    The psychological impact of months without electricity, access to food and clean water, and unexpectedly losing loved ones – experienced on an island-wide scale – cannot be overstated. This kind of stress and instability is

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  • Chirlane McCray Bill de Blasio

    Chirlane McCray, with Bill de Blasio looking on (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayor's Office)


    On a sunny Wednesday morning in November 2015, more than 30 of New York City’s top public officials gathered together in East Harlem. They stood shoulder-to-shoulder and tiered in three rows on the ground floor of the City University of New York’s school of social work. An audience of hospital administrators, business leaders, mental health advocates and journalists watched from folded seats.

    Chirlane McCray, wife of New York City Mayor Bill de

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  • mayornyc james o neil

    (Credit: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    The New York City Council Progressive Caucus is stepping up calls for Mayor Bill de Blasio to reconstitute a citywide task force to examine how emergency responders help people suffering from mental illness, and are insisting that the mayor consider creating a parallel response force of social workers and therapists that can answer calls rather than police officers.

    In a letter sent to the mayor last Wednesday, the 21 members of the Progressive Caucus said the mayor should act by the end of

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  • mxm logo

    Ben Max, left, of Gotham Gazette, and Jarrett Murphy, right, of City Limits


    March 26, 2018 - Max & Murphy Podcast: New York City First Lady Chirlane McCray

    Chirlane McCray

    New York City First Lady Chirlane McCray is leading the city's ThriveNYC mental health care plan and its many component programs, serving as Chair of the Mayor's Fund to Advance New York City, and providing guidance as her

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    NYCHA community gathering at Queensbridge (Pete Mikoleski/NYCHA flickr) 


    At a recent training session, just over 35 New York City Housing Authority staff members assembled at the authority’s downtown offices last Thursday. The course, which included eight topics, was part of the city’s ThriveNYC mental health care plan, one piece of which is 2,000 NYCHA employees receiving mental health care training so that they can more carefully and helpfully interact with public housing residents who may be experiencing mental health challenges.

    The eight

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  • school guidance counselors kipp

    (Dr. Thelma Dye, the author)


    Prince Harry’s recent admission he is seeking treatment to come to terms with his mother’s death made headlines across the globe and for good reason. As recently as 20 years ago public opinion polls here in the U.S. found more than half the country believed depression was a sign of personal or emotional weakness. So when one of the world’s most recognizable and influential figures says not even a royal is immune to mental health challenges, it can have a significant impact.

    Harry, along with his

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  • NYPD lights officer car

    (photo: @NYPDnews)


    Heartbreak and outrage at another deadly police shooting - this time concerning Deborah Danner, a 66-year-old woman with a psychiatric disability. Police, responding to a call about an "emotionally disturbed person," entered her apartment and when the woman became agitated and combative, an NYPD Sergeant killed her.

    It is all achingly familiar. In 1984, Eleanor Bumpurs, who was also a disabled elderly black woman in the Bronx, was killed with twin shotgun blasts in similar circumstances.

    In the wake of Bumpurs'

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  • MHFA Training

    Mental Health First Aid training (photo via Council Member Cohen's office)


    As City Council members we are known mainly for our work of enacting legislation, passing the budget, and land use determinations. What is often overlooked is the business our offices and staff do all day, every day -- the business of constituent services. Any community member can walk off the street into our district offices or call those offices by phone and will be assisted by staff on whatever the issue may be.

    You can come in if you need a document notarized or if you call in a

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  • chirlane mccray richard buery mental health

    Chirlane McCray & Richard Buery testify (photo: William Alatriste)

     


     

    At a Jan. 28 oversight hearing held by the Committee on Mental Health, First Lady Chirlane McCray testified before the City Council for the first time, updating the Council on the city’s progress implementing its new

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