News & Events

State House Rally to Oppose the Closure of Taunton State Hospital and to Improve Mental Health Services for All Residents of the Commonwealth Will Be Held March 22 at 10 a.m.

03.21.2012

View the photos on Facebook from the event

Hundreds of Advocates, Caregivers, Concerned Families and Consumers of Mental Health Services Will Attend the Event Where Legislators Will Unveil a Budget Amendment to Stop the Closure of Taunton State Hospital — Call for a Study of Mental Health Needs in the State

What:

 

In the wake of the Patrick administration’s plan to close Taunton State Hospital and what many state legislators and mental health advocates are calling a “mental health crisis” in Massachusetts, a number of lawmakers, led by State Sen. Marc Pacheco (D-Taunton) and Rep. Patricia Haddad (D-Somerset) are holding a “Rally to Save Mental Health Services” at the State House on March 22, beginning at 10 a.m. in the Gardner Auditorium. Throughout the state, mental health services are inadequate and those seeking treatment are often unable to access care. Hospital emergency departments are overcrowded with psychiatric patients who cannot access needed inpatient and community services, resulting in patients boarding in hospital emergency rooms for days or even weeks waiting for care. Patients are being inappropriately admitted to medical units because there is no place for them to go, while others are languishing in homeless shelters or finding themselves trapped in correctional facilities for want of appropriate treatment and community supports. Private sector inpatient psychiatric units and/or beds have been eliminated, depriving patients access to care. And now the state wants to close Taunton State Hospital, eliminating 169 beds from the system, forcing those patients and families to seek care at already overtaxed facilities in Worcester and Tewksbury. To address this crisis, legislators have crafted an amendment to the state budget that would halt the closure of Taunton State Hospital, and other inpatient services until an independent study is conducted to determine the actual need for and availability of inpatient and community services and supports. 

     

Who:

 

Mental health advocates, consumers of mental health services and/or family members, caregivers and legislators will gather to speak about the current crisis and the need for legislative action to protect the state’s most vulnerable and marginalized residents. 

     

Where:

 

State House, Gardner Auditorium

     

When:

 

10 a.m. on Thursday, March 22

     

For more information about the event, contact Colby Marques in Sen. Marc Pacheco’s office at 617.722.1551.