Serving Mentally Ill Offenders: Challenges & Opportunities for Mental Health Professionals

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Gerald Landsberg, DSW, Marjorie Rock, Dr.PH, Lawerence K.W. Berg, PhD, Esq.
Springer Publishing Company, Jan 10, 2002 - Psychology - 368 pages
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This comprehensive book addresses the complex issues associated with the criminalization of mentally ill offenders in the United States and the ways in which social workers and other mental health professionals can best channel their efforts to create better services and treatment.

Specialists in law enforcement, community-based mental health and outreach, the legal community, the corrections environment, and substance abuse providers present best practices and programs that offer rehabilitation alternatives to mentally ill offenders.

Unique to this volume is the perspective provided by key players of the criminal justice system including a judge, a prosecutor, an advocate, a defense attorney, and a mentally ill offender. The last section provides in-depth research into the challenges of placing the dually-diagnosed offender into alternative-to-incarceration programs.

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About the author (2002)

Gerald Landsberg, DSW, is Professor, Chair of Social Policy and Director of the Institute Against Violence at the Ehrenkranz School of Social Work of New York University. He holds a DSW degree (CUNY, 1979), an MPA (NYU, 1979), and an MSW (NYU, 1967). Prior to this academic appointment in 1991, Dr. Landsberg had an extensive administrative and research professional career in mental health. These included serving as an Associate Commissioner for the New York City Department of Mental Health (1987-1991), Director of Ulster County Mental Health Services (1979-1987), and the Director of Research and Evaluation of Maimonides Community Mental Center (1968-1978). In his professional roles at Ulster County Mental Health Services and with the New York Department of Mental Health, Dr. Landsberg oversaw forensic mental health services. Dr. Landsberg is and has conducted significant research in their area - e.g., an evaluation of alternatives to incarceration, victims of mentally ill offenders. He is the author of numerous books and articles and has made presentations of forensic mental health. He is the editor of forensic mental health newsletter.

Majorie Rock, DrPH, is an Associate Professor at the Ehrenkranz School of Social Work where she teaches courses in Social Policy, Mental Health and Research at the Masters and Doctoral level. She has more than 25 years of experience in public mental health and, for the last 14 years, she has conducted research and provided training in the area of forensic mental health. Prior to her full time academic affiliation, Dr. Rock served as the Director of Research and Training for the New York City Department of Mental Health, Mental Retardation and Alcoholism Services. In this capacity she developed, implemented, and evaluated a model police-mental health training program. This program received a Certificate of Significant Achievement from the Institute on Hospital and Community Psychiatry in 1989. Dr. Rock has written extensively about forensic mental health issues and is currently the Director of the Forensic Mental Health Certificate Training Program at the Ehrenkranz School of Social Work's Institute Against Violence. This purpose of this program is train staff in the criminal justice, substance abuse and mental health system with respect to both clinical and systems aspects so that they may work together more effectively. Dr. Rock has served as a consultant to several juvenile and criminal justice agencies. Dr. Rock received her MSW from the Adelphi University school of Social Work and her Doctorate in Public Health from Columbia University School of Public Health.

Amy Smiley, PhD. Amy Smiley received her PhD from the Universite de Paris VII (1990) in the Science of Texts and Documents. A former professor of Twentieth-Century French Studies at Johns Hopkins University, she published a book and numerous articles in her areas of specialization including the French Resistance and French colonialism in North Africa. Since 1999, she has been a Research Associate at the Institute Against Violence at NYU's Ehrenkranz School of Social Work, where she is also pursuing her MSW. Among other activities at the Institute, Smiley coordinated the Second International Conference on Forensic Mental Health. She also analyzed and reported on survey results regarding mental health services in the jails of New York State. She is Assistant Editor of the "Community Mental Health Report, " and is co-editor of two major publications on forensic mental health.

Lawrence K.W. Berg, MSW, JD, PhD, entered law after more than 20 years of direct experience in the health, mental health, and human service fields. He practices in the areas of Behavioral Health Law and Health Law, as well as in the areas of Disability Law. For more than 18 years, he was the Director of Mental Health, Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities, and Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services in Columbia County, NY., where he was responsible for the design and implementation of a wide range of mental health services to criminal offenders in the county jail and in the community. He also served as the county's Public Health Director. In addition to his executive leadership positions, Dr. Berg has conducted research, has published, and has made numerous presentations on legal and ethical matters in health, forensic and other mental health services. His clinical and administrative experience in the behavioral health system makes him knowledgeable about the many legal and operational issues facing clinicians, managers and executives. Dr. Berg is currently in the faculty of the Ehrenkranz School of Social Work of the New York University as a Clinical Associate Professor. His prior legal experience being an associate with a major health law firm in Albany, NY. He now has his own firm in New York and Massachusetts. His practice includes providing legal and management consultation services to healthcare and behavioral healthcare professionals, organizations and networks of providers. Dr. Berg has a BA degree in Psychology from the City College of New York and holds a MSW degree from Yeshiva University, NY. He earned his PhD at the University of Chicago and was awarded his JD cum laude from Western New England College of Law. He is a certified Social Worker in New York State, and is also admitted to the Bar in New York and Massachusetts.

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