When help disappears-the crisis created by mental health cutbacks


photo by Rosemary Lambin

They not only feel lost, but are, indeed, lost. They miss the help that once kept them afloat. They miss the certainty of help that was near and was a haven.


Read Fred Lowe’s compelling and important reporting about the impact of the closing of some of Chicago’s mental health clinics on the black men who found help there.


Black men and mental health needs


He writes:


“AFSCME said that at the clinics that were closed, 61 percent of the clients were African American. Many of them were indigent, union officials said.

“It was not clear how many were African-American men, but Darryl Gumm, chair of the Community Mental Health Board of Chicago, said the free city clinics were essential for black men seeking treatment.

“It is clearly an economic issue. Most black men can’t afford to pay a psychiatrist or a therapist for treatment of depression because of the high-unemployment rate in the black community,” Gumm said.”


What are the mental health and disability needs that call out for attention in Chicago communities?

Who are the people who’ve been forgotten, and the ones who fret that cutbacks will soon throw them likewise into desperate searches for help?

We’ll talk about the problems as well as the victories for those with mental health and disability issues at our upcoming news briefing from 10 am to noon, Tuesday, June 16th at Room 101, Columbia College, 33 East Congress, Chicago.

Join us and learn about an issue that touches many and that calls out for your reporting.

Stephen Franklin, steve@chicagoistheworld.org, 312 369 6400




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