Should Bystanders Intervene When They Identify Mental Illness?
In two days of training, people are learning to recognize conditions like bipolar disorder and schizophrenia in strangers, and what to do about it.
Read more. [Image: Alan Cleaver/flickr]
I think this is a really good idea for public service people, teachers, etc., but for bystanders? Nooooooooooooo. I work with people with untreated mental illness on a regular basis, and you really have to know the signs of when you’re pushing too much/agitation/their baseline behavior, etc. Like, this is all great advice, but please don’t randomly walk up to someone who appears to be hallucinating (?) or whatever and do this.
Also, I kind of chafe at this being part of the president’s plan to reduce gun violence. Like, I understand why teachers need this training (and think it is beneficial in the long run), and that a lot of these people fall through the cracks in the system, but this kind of give the impression of “identify these people, or else.” I mean, we all know that people with mental illnesses are much more likely to be victims of violence than to perpetrate it, so what are we saying here?