Northwest Voices | Letters to the Editor
New mental-health court opens in Snohomish County
More ethical and cost effective
I applaud Snohomish County’s efforts to offer better legal services to people with mental illness or substance-use issues [“Mental-health court tries to help break the cycle,”seattletimes.com, Nov. 24]. Not only is it more ethical to provide these services to people with these issues, it is also more cost effective to provide services that help remove people from getting stuck in repeated health care and legal-system use.
As a graduate student and social services professional, I have seen the reduced-system impact when someone is given an opportunity to receive appropriate services, as well as the continued drain on the system when people slip through the cracks and don’t get the support they could so desperately use.
The article suggests that Snohomish County will not accept individuals who have a history of violence or who were charged with a felony. I urge the court to offer these legal services to these people as well, in order that they may be given the same chance to recover from their disorder and resolve their legal issues that everyone else is able to receive.
— Ryan Fouts, Seattle