To wander off in shame: Deconstructing the shaming and shameful arrest policies of urban police departments in their treatment of persons with mental disabilities
RMIT's Graduate School of Business and Law presents Professor Perlin as a guest of Associated Professor Penelope Weller, Director of the JD Program, Graduate School of Business and Law Under the College of Business International Visiting Scholar Scheme.
We must take seriously the complexity of interactions between persons with mental disabilities and the police.
Although for some years, we have been repeating the bromide that the nation’s largest mental health facility is – depending on where you live -- Rikers Island (NY), Cook County Jail (IL) or the Los Angeles County Jail (CA) (Perlin, 2013c; Acquaviva, 2006), comprehending that reality has not, until recently, led us to comprehend:
(1) how these interactions lead to the deaths and serious injuries of persons with mental disabilities far more than other citizens
(2) how there is valid and reliable research telling us about alternative ways of dealing with the underlying issues
(3) the extent to which these interactions typically involve humiliation and shame, usually entirely obscured from the public discourse
Emeritus Professor Michael Perlin Esq.
Professor Emeritus of Law
Founding Director, International Mental Disability Law Reform Project
Co-founder, Mental Disability Law and Policy Associates
New York Law School
Emeritus Professor Michael Perlin is an international expert on therapeutic jurisprudence, problem solving courts and mental health courts, and the intersection of these movements with the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Michael practiced law for 13 years (as a Public Defender and then as director of New Jersey’s Division of Mental Health Advocacy), and taught at New York Law School for over 30 years.
He created the online mental disability law program ( offering 13 separate domestic and international courses) and the international mental disability law reform project.
He has written 30 books approximately 300 articles on various aspects of mental disability law. He is a co-founder of the Mental Disability Law and Policy Associates (MDLPA) providing continuing education for mental health professionals.
Michael is on the board of directors of the Washington Crossing (NJ) Audubon Society and plays the clarinet in the Lawrence Township (NJ) community band.