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The Treatment Of Mentally Ill Prisoners

Concertina wire surrounding a prison
Kate Ter Harr
/
Flickr Creative Commons

    

A recent report by Human Rights Watch documents widespread abuse of mentally ill inmates in prisons across America. The abuses include dousing with chemical sprays, being shocked with stun guns and strapping inmates to beds for hours at a time.

  Host Frank Stasio talks with the lead author of the report, Jamie Fellner, about her research. Stasio also speaks with Wallace Kirby, a community organizer advocate for University Legal Services in Washington, DC. Kirby spent much of his life in prison and has received a diagnosis for paranoid schizophrenia. He talks about the abuse he suffered in prison.

Stasio also speaks with Elizabeth Simpson, an attorney with North Carolina Prisoner Legal Services, Inc., about mentally ill inmates she has defended in cases of abuse. 

Hady Mawajdeh is a native Texan, born and raised in San Antonio. He listened to Fresh Air growing up and fell in love with public radio. He earned his B.A. in Mass Communication at Texas State University and specialized in electronic media. He worked at NPR affiliate stations KUT and KUTX in Austin, Texas as an intern, producer, social media coordinator, and a late-night deejay.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.