Skip to main content


There are about 3,000 prisons and detention centers in the United States and even more around the world, but few of them are equipped to treat the percentage of their population that suffer from a mental illness. While concerns about mental illness issues is on the rise, conditions like depression, anxiety, and PTSD existed before there were clinical names for them and therefore went unrecognized as a clinical condition for years. Even with our advancements in this field, nearly 20 percent of inmates, in the United States, suffer from mental illnesses, and aren’t getting the vital treatment that could potentially save their life or the lives of those around them. Although there is the “Competency to Stand Trial” law, someone can be sane enough to stand trial but still suffer from mental illness. This paper will illustrate the hardships that people with mental disorders face when seeking professional help, how people with mental illnesses are treated within the criminal justice system and what we can do as a society to better understand mental illnesses and what we can do to help. If mental illnesses were accepted more easily in the criminal justice system and programs were put into place to treat those in need, then the population of inmates in the prison system could decrease, because they are getting the proper care they deserve.


This is a metadata-only record.



  • Subject
    • Criminal Justice

  • Institution
    • Dahlonega

  • Event location
    • Nesbitt 3204

  • Event date
    • 25 March 2022

  • Date submitted

    20 July 2022

  • Additional information
    • Acknowledgements:

      John Batchelder