Mental Health

2019 Mental Health Forum

Make It Top Priority

In October, 2019, we enjoyed a robust discussion at Vanguard University of Southern California on the subject of the Lanterman Petris Short Act and solutions that your community can utilize to improve the Mental Healthcare System in California.

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A History of the  Lanterman-Petris-Short  Act of 1967 

Passed in 1967 by the California state legislature and signed by Governor Ronald Reagan, the Lanterman-Petris-Short Act (Senate Bill 677, LPS Act) established a new system for involuntary civil commitments for the mentally ill in California and attempted to move treatment from state hospitals to a community-based approach, while balancing civil liberties for those needing treatment.

Propelled by a national outcry over the dismal and inhumane treatment of those committed to state institutions and in response to a provocative legislative committee report, “The Dilemma of Mental Commitments in California,” the state began to draft legislative proposals that would curtail judicial oversight and restore admission rights to medical professionals. This legislation also provided police with detention and emergency admission rights.

The intention of the legislation was to curb the severe abuses occurring in California mental institutions and cease unjustified lifetime commitments. After the implementation of the LPS Act, many individuals were released from mental institutions under the pretense of restoring their civil liberties and allowing movement without restraint in a controlled facility.

Download LPS Act Report