Local Leaders Call for Better Mental Healthcare

Local Leaders Call for Better Mental Healthcare

Local leaders are looking for ways to treat mental health issues to prevent another mass shooting tragedy.
FREDERICK, MD - Local leaders are looking for ways to treat mental health issues to prevent another mass shooting tragedy.

"I think for a number of years this has been an issue," says Delegate Michael Hough (R) of Washington and Frederick Counties. "But I think these recent rash of shootings with people that were mentally ill that carried them out, it's highlighting one of the problems in our society."

Hough plans to introduce a bill to create a task force and study the issue further.

With so many of these shootings in recent years, experts say there may be a "copycat" element for these troubled men.

"Someone sees something, and they're not doing it because they saw it, but if they're then experiencing a rage, they're saying 'OK well this is what's happened before and I know that then that's something I can do,'" says Pat Hanberry, CEO of the Mental Health Association.

One solution could be more education, especially for those who see a victim of mental illness and could interfere to stop an unthinkable event.

"There have been a couple of cases in these shootings where people were aware, usually it was because the person was really really quiet and a loner, and people were aware that something was going on but didn't reach out, didn't try to get the person connected to treatment and then it ended up in a tragedy," says Hanberry.

The Mental Health Association wants to ask the public to help anyone they know who may struggle with mental illness. They offer a "mental health first aid" class, and encourage everyone to sign up.
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