Health is Health

Back from a 2-day workshop in Miami-Dade to study their highly esteemed criminal mental health program and Ft Lauderdale, where the first mental health court in America was established and is still being run by Judge Ginger Lerner-Wren.

Both are “diversion” programs, pulling people with serious mental illness from the criminal justice system to provide them with necessary health services.

Judge Ginger said to me, “Health is health. We don’t put people in jail when they have a broken arm or diabetes. Why would they be put in jail if they have a mental illness? Health is health. Be well!”

In addition to learning about these amazing programs, it is clear the people behind them are wholeheartedly engaged in the best possible ways. Everyone I met is working from both head and heart.

Because of this, they were deeply inspiring. Their humanity was front and center. It was uplifting to be with people so deeply engaged in caring for others caught in the system.

In the picture above, I am taking a tour of a new diversion facility being developed. The gentleman in the suit is Judge Steve Leifman, the force behind Miami-Dade’s success.

“ A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves.”
– Lao Tzu

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