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Recognize Mental Illness

June 19, 2002

Thank you for your June 16 article "Jail Suicides Reach Record Pace in State." As usual, The Times is at the forefront identifying and highlighting growing problems before others recognize their existence. The Times' editorials supporting AB 1421 offer a solution to at least one, and probably many other, suicide cases.

Instead of releasing Joshua Daniel Lee to continue his slide into severe psychosis, if court-mandated, assisted-outpatient treatment (AB 1421) were available and utilized, his death, his alleged victim's death and many other preventable deaths might have been avoided. Thank you for your continued concern for the large number of people with mental illness in jail or prison.

Brian Jacobs

President, NAMI California

Long Beach

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