• Mental illness costs America $193.2 billion in lost earnings per year
  • Mood disorders, including major depression, dysthymic disorder and bipolar disorder, are the third most common cause of hospitalization in the U.S. for both youth and adults aged 18–44
  • People with mental illness face an increased risk of having chronic medical conditions. Adults in the U.S. with mental illness die on average 25 years earlier than others, largely due to treatable medical conditions. Over one-third (37%) of students with a mental health condition age 14–21 and older who are served by special education drop out—the highest dropout rate of any disability group
  • Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the U.S., the 3rd leading cause of death for people aged 10–24 and the 2nd leading cause of death for people aged 15–24
  • More than 90% of children who die by suicide have a mental health condition
  • Each day an estimated 18-22 veterans die by suicide
  • 2 million people with mental illness are booked into jails each year.
  • Nearly 15% of men and 30% of women booked into jails have a serious mental health condition.
  • Once in jail – At least 83% of jail inmates with a mental illness did not have access to needed treatment and as a result, their conditions get worse – They stay longer than their counterparts without mental illness – They’re at risk of victimization.

After leaving jail – Many no longer have access to needed health care and benefits – A criminal record often makes it hard for people to get a job or housing – Many people, especially without access to mental health services and supports, wind up homeless, in emergency rooms and often re-arrested.

Simply jailing people experiencing mental health crises creates huge burdens on law enforcement, corrections facilities and state and local budgets. It does not protect public safety and people who could be helped are being ignored.