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Mental Health System in State

April 17, 1985

I want to sincerely thank you for printing the three special articles about the mental health system. Each one was a penetrating and thorough report on a difficult and important subject.

I am the parent of a seriously mentally ill son who is 28 years old. I am just learning the ropes of the mental health system and I have come across the very problems you have reported.

I have joined a family advocacy group, the Alliance for the Mentally Ill, in the hopes of making the situation better for those who suffer this devastating illness. One of the ways to try to straighten out the flaws and abuses in the system is to keep it before the eyes of the public, and I believe your paper has done a service in this direction.

Please keep abreast of the developments and keep reporting it. We are working for legislation along with our elected state officers to reduce stigma, improve housing and treatment and to encourage research into the causes and possible cures of mental illness. This is an illness that strikes in every strata of economic and social life and has a far reaching effect that goes beyond the ill person to include their family, friends and the society in which they live.

FRANCES ASHURST

Long Beach

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