The candidate I’ll vote for in 2016 will be the one with an ambitious and progressive plan to fight our nation’s dirtiest open secret: we face a monumental public mental health crisis the likes of which have never before been seen.
Mental health benefits for the poorest Americans are being lost left and right as states trim budgets. In Pennsylvania, the Commonwealth decided years ago to shut down mental hospitals as a way of saving money, yet we pay more now per year per homeless mental health consumer than would have had the hospitals stayed open. This is not to mention all the other societal costs. This is not to mention the kinds of things none can put a price on: healthy communities where everyone is safe and everyone is cared for according to their need. In 2013, is that really too much to ask?