Two Markedly Different Outcomes: Tasers vs Compassion. I Talk About My Son’s Encounters With Police

(2-22-18) SAMHSA’s GAINS Center recently interviewed me about my family’s story and the need for mental health reform. In this first of four short segments – each 2 to 4 minutes long – I was asked to describe two much different encounters that my son had with law enforcement and how handcuffing someone who is sick and transporting them in a police squad car is traumatic.

As always, I appreciate my son’s willingness to allow me to share our story. Thank you Kevin.

(My reference to one-in-four fatal police shootings involving an individual with a mental illness is based on a Washington Post survey. The Treatment Advocacy Center puts the percentage much higher, writing “at least half of the people shot and killed by police each year in this country have mental health problems.”

Tomorrow: In a perfect world, how should someone who is in crisis be transported to a treatment facility.

About the author:

Pete Earley is the bestselling author of such books as The Hot House and Crazy. When he is not spending time with his family, he tours the globe advocating for mental health reform.

Learn more about Pete.