07/14 - Defining “Dangerous”

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How does Louisiana determine if someone is a danger to themselves or others?

A California stabbing and shooting spree in May has renewed the debate over how and whether to require people with serious mental illness to receive psychiatric care. How does Louisiana determine if someone is a danger to themselves or others? How difficult is it to intervene if an afflicted individual refuses treatment? Are prisons adequately prepared to handle mentally ill offenders? What services exist in the state for persons with mental health issues and have funding cuts reduced their availability? Louisiana Public Square looks for answers to these questions and more on Defining “Dangerous” airing Wednesday, July 23rd at 7 p.m. on LPB HD.
1. Do you know someone – such as a family member, friend, or coworker – who suffers from a mental illness?
2. To the best of your knowledge is that person seeking treatment?
3. Please tell me how important a public health problem you think mental illness is in Louisiana?
4. In general, how comfortable would you be, personally living next door to someone who has a serious mental illness?
5. In your opinion, how likely is it that someone with a serious mental illness who does not receive any treatment would do something violent toward other people?
6. In your opinion, how likely is it that someone with a serious mental illness who is receiving treatment would do something violent toward other people?
7. Some cities and states have laws that force people with serious mental illness into different kinds of treatment, such as seeing a doctor, taking prescription medication, or being committed to a hospital. Do you think that people with serious mental illness should be forced by law to get treatment from a doctor?
8. Do you think that people with serious mental illness should be forced by law to take a prescription medication to control behavior?
9. Do you think that people with serious mental illness should be forced by law to be committed to a hospital for treatment?
10. Would you like to see more or less government spending by the state of Louisiana for mental health care?
11. On the whole, do you think it should or should not be the government’s responsibility to provide health care for persons with mental illnesses?
12. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: “Armed guards in all public schools is the best way to prevent school shootings”
13. Do you support making it illegal for people with documented mental illness to purchase and own guns?
14. When it comes to recognizing the symptoms of mental illness, do you feel that you are very well informed, fairly well informed, or not well informed at all?
15. How much prejudice do you think there is against people with serious mental illness in the United States today?
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