In a victory for patients and staff at Maryland’s correctional institutions, the Maryland Department of Health announced yesterday that it will add 40 beds at mental health facilities to treat patients wrongfully held in jails. The move came after AFSCME Maryland held a news conference Tuesday morning condemning Governor Larry Hogan for a shortage of beds for mentally ill patients. “The reality is there are people languishing in prison who should not be in prison because they have mental health issues. They clearly need to be in state facilities,” said AFSCME Maryland president Patrick Moran. “The fight isn't over yet,” said Moran. “We will continue to pressure Gov. Hogan and the health department to fill vacancies in these facilities, ensuring there are enough workers on staff to care for mental health patients.” Commuters passing the Baltimore Central Booking and Intake Center Monday night got a sneak preview of the issue when the union projected their message on the jail. photo courtesy AFSCME Maryland Facebook page
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