Reporter investigates the harsh realities of civil commitment

Investigative reporter Barbara Koeppel takes a critical look at the practice of civil commitment in the United States in a report for the Washington Spectator. The introduction to the article calls civil commitment “the third rail of the criminal justice system.”

Organizations and professionals familiar with the abuses of civil commitment are its harshest critics. The American Psychiatric Association told its members to “vigorously oppose” it. Two judges, from Minnesota and Missouri, found the laws “punitive and unconstitutional.” Tapatha Strickler, a clinical psychologist who worked at the civil commitment facility in Larned, Kansas, calls it “an abomination.” But the practice persists at huge cost to individuals and taxpayers.

You can read the full report at the Washington Spectator.

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