Updated: Jul 13
May is National Mental Health Awareness month. According to the Massachusetts Correctional Funding report released in January of this year, 70% of justice involved individuals housed at the Hampshire County Sheriff's Office self-report having severe mental illness while 50% of individuals housed at the facility have a facility obtained severe mental health diagnosis. While other facilities are adding mental health staff at staggering rates to keep up with the pressing mental health needs of the individuals in their care, the Hampshire County Sheriff's Office remains stagnant in addressing this need.
As a practicing correctional nurse and certified correctional health professional (CCHP), Caitlin has spent a decade seeing first hand, from night of intake to day of release, how the epidemic of under treated mental health issues has ravaged justice involved individuals and the impact that can have on facility safety, families and communities. This is why the expansion of mental health services, to include a Mental Health Department at the Hampshire Sheriff's Office, where one does not presently exist, with clinically licensed staff to oversee the needs of individuals, will be a primary initiative of this administration. Join us in creating this much needed change by voting Caitlin Sepeda for Hampshire County Sheriff on September 6th.