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The Exchange

Assessing Mental Health Care: One Year After Newtown

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Thomas Fearon
/
NHPR

The unthinkable event that left twenty school kids and six teachers dead in Newtown, Connecticut last year, stunned a nation. But Newtown didn’t stand alone; there have been many incidents in the last few years that left us in disbelief, like the ones at Virginia Tech, Washington’s naval shipyard, an Aurora, Colorado movie theater, and a Wisconsin Sikh Temple. The two things they had in common: a gun was used, and in many cases the perpetrator had a mental illness. This year, as debates crossed the country about gun control; the question ‘are we doing enough for the mentally ill?’ arose. After years of budget cuts, many now are saying that we need to re-fund programs and to put mental health front and center if we are to ever going to being to feel safe again.

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