Serving the Mentally Ill behind Bars

By Steve Rempe | Posted June 26, 2013

On a broadcast of PBS’ Religion and Ethics Newsweekly, PFM Senior Vice President Pat Nolan offers his thoughts on the incarceration of mentally ill inmates, and the Christian obligation to reach out in love to those in need behind bars.

“You know, Jesus said, ‘I was naked, and you clothed me.  I was hungry and you fed me.  I was thirsty and you gave me to drink.  I was in prison and you visited me,’” says Nolan.  “These are our brothers and sisters.  We do have an obligation to them.”

The video also includes interviews with prison and law enforcement officials, as well as with inmates and ex-inmates who deal with mental health issues.  They discuss the history of mental illness in America’s prisons; the moral, ethical, and fiscal ramifications of locking up the mentally ill in prison, and possible alternatives to current practices.

To learn more about the issue of mental illness in prison, visit the Justice Fellowship website.

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