Senator Samra Brouk (SD-55), Chair of the Senate Committee on Mental Health, and Assemblyman Harry Bronson (AD-138) have introduced Daniel’s Law, which outlines how New Yorkers experiencing a mental health breakdown and/or substance abuse crisis can better be served by a public health response that maximizes consent-based care and minimizes the role of law enforcement and the use of force against an individual.
It would empower the State Department of Health to create a new statewide mental health response council and local mental health response units. These new units would offer a more comprehensive and secure way to answer mental health and substance abuse crises with safety, care and compassion.
The bills (S-4814, A-4697) have been referred to the Mental Health Committees in both houses. They have the full support of the Monroe County Democratic state delegation to ensure that no one else endures what Daniel Prude did last March. Please thank them if they are your reps. I
The law would:
• promote the public health, safety, and welfare of all citizens by broadly ensuring a public health-based response to anyone in New York experiencing a mental health or substance abuse crisis
• offer and ensure the most appropriate response to, treatment of, and transport of individuals experiencing crisis due to mental health conditions or substance use
• de-escalate crisis situations so that as few New Yorkers as possible experience non-consensual transport, use of force, or criminal consequences as a result of mental health or substance abuse crisis.
The full text can be found here.
Last week, the grand jury convened by Attorney General Letitia James declined to indict the officers involved, dealing another heavy blow to the Rochester Black community and communities of color throughout the state and the country. We redouble our efforts to create a public safety system that responds appropriately to mental health and substance abuse crises, honors the lives of all people, and upholds the ideals of racial and social justice.
If you’re interested in getting involved, email firstname.lastname@example.org