Updated: ON MENTAL ILLNESS: AB 1250 a Disaster

Jack Bragen
Sunday September 10, 2017 - 08:01:00 PM

AB 1250 is close to being passed by the California Legislature. It is a union backed bill that would put extreme restrictions on social service agencies that receive funding from county governments. In order to obtain a contract, agencies must demonstrate that no county jobs would be eliminated, and that there would be a savings to government as a result of the contract.  

This proposed law would adversely affect mental health services in California. My take on it is that persons in need of psychiatric treatment could be forced into the county systems, where before they had choices of going to nonprofit and/or private agencies for mental health care. It could gut all of the social service systems in California, including but not limited to those that provide mental health treatment.  

NAMI recently sent out a bulletin to its members urging us to contact our State Assembly and State Senate, to voice opposition to this bill. This is what prompted me to write this piece.  

The bill has been amended about six times since its initial introduction.  

This bill is for the purpose of maintaining jobs for county workers, and it does nothing whatsoever to help conditions for those in a position of receiving government funded services.  

It is about time that government prioritizes the well-being of vulnerable people, rather than prioritizing the incomes of salaried employees.