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Mental Health Awareness

Carmen Kieffer- Rhea

Senior Research Seminar

Mr. Tempinski

March 11, 2016



This research proposal examines the difficulties that comes with being mentally impaired. By

examining the mentally impaired, this research proposal will clarify the causes and effects of

mental illness as well as places they can go for shelter. The issue that will be studied includes the

budget cuts the mentally impaired have been going through for the past couple of years along

with all the neglect to help the mentally impaired. I will use a series of interviews and surveys.

Data will be collected from teens and young adults and maybe even people with mental

disabilities. Some view that the way things are great but that simply isnt true. The implications

from my research will create a voice for those who dont have one.

Mental Health Awareness

Through the years as I was growing up I always felt as if that everyone would talk about how we

need to get homeless off the street and get this crazy people in the luny bin. We always talk

about how we can help the mentally disabled But what have we really done? People wait for

months at the clinics for help and some even years, at the end of it all they still don't get the help

they seriously need. What are we really doing? I want to get the bottom if this situation and help

this community get their voice heard. The purpose of my research, is to find out how the folks

who have been turned down help feel and discuss the causes and effects of having mental illness

along with organizations you can go for help. All we are doing is talking about the problem but

we are doing nothing to change anything.

Well before the early 5th century Many cultures have viewed mental illness as a form of

religious punishment or demonic possession. During the Middle Ages, the mentally ill were

believed to be possessed or in need of religion. Negative attitudes towards mental illness

persisted into the 18th century in the United States, leading to stigmatization of mental illness,

and unhygienic (and often degrading) confinement of mentally ill individuals. In the 1840s,

activist Dorothea Dix fought for better living conditions for the mentally ill after witnessing the

dangerous and unhealthy conditions in which many patients lived . Over a 40-year period, Dix

successfully persuaded the U.S. government to fund the building of 32 state psychiatric hospitals.

In 1752 the Quakers in Philadelphia were the first in America to make an organized effort to care

for the mentally ill. The newly-opened Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia provided rooms in

the basement complete with shackles attached to the walls to house a small number of mentally

ill patients.
In the article for Causes for Mental Illnesses says that mental illness can happen to

anyone. There are many causes for mental illness. It can be caused by simply genetics,

infections, brain defects, or injury, prenatal damage, substance abuse or other factors like poor

nutrition and exposures to toxins like lead.

In the article A Separate and Unequal System people with mental illness face legal

discrimination it states that without government support, a lot of states haven't been able to

afford and even keep their psychiatric hospitals open. States closed 10% of their hospital beds

from 2009 to 2012, says Robert Glover, who is the executive director of the National Association

of State Mental Health Program Directors (NASMHPD). Private hospitals all over the country

have reduced their psychiatric beds mainly because Medicare and Medicaid usually pay less for

mental health care than for medical care, says Ron Honberg, national director of policy and legal

affairs at NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness. Also found in the same article that the

states drop services for the mentally ill, many land in emergency rooms, jails, city streets or the

morgue. Forty percent (40%) of people with severe mental illness, such as schizophrenia,

received no treatment in the past year. States cut $5 billion from mental health services from

2009 to 2012, along with 10% of psychiatric hospital beds.

In the PDF State Mental Health Cuts: National Crises it declares that one in seventeen

Americans live with a serious mental disorder such as schizophrenia, major depression, or

bipolar disorder. And about one and two children live with a serious mental disorder. In the years

between 2009 and 2011 more than 1.8 million dollars were cut from the funding for mental

health for children and adults. California cut 580 7.7 million dollars during this period, New

York cut 132 million and Illinois cut 113. 7 million dollars as well. Two large resources for state

support on mental health services are Medicaid ( 46% in 2007) and the second are state general
funds administered by state mental health authorities, (40% in 2007.) Many states has a

physically cut non Medicaid mental health funding from 2009 to 2011 with deeper cuts in 2012.

In the article Cost of not caring; Nowhere to go, by USA "Today it declares that states

have been reducing hospital beds for decades, because of insurance pressures as well as a desire

to provide more care outside institutions. Tight budgets during the recession forced some of the

most tremendous cuts in recent years..." says Robert Glover, executive director of the National

Association of State Mental Health Program Directors. States cut $5 billion in mental health

services from 2009 to 2012. In the same period, the country eliminated at least 4,500 public

psychiatric hospital beds nearly 10% of the total supply, he says.

In the web article Consequences of Non-treatment for mental health three big

consequences for no treatment are Homelessness. People with untreated psychiatric illnesses

comprise one-third, or 200,000 people, of the estimated 600,000 homeless population. Many are

victimized regularly. A recent study has found that 28 percent of homeless people with previous

psychiatric hospitalizations obtained some food from garbage cans and eight percent used

garbage cans as a primary food source. No one should live like this. Secondly is incarceration.

People with untreated serious brain disorders comprise approximately 16 percent of the total jail

and prison inmate population, or nearly 319,000 individuals. A lot of mental health people

usually get misdemeanor charges but sometimes they are charged with a felony. It is a result of

behaviors caused by their psychotic thinking. People with untreated psychiatric illnesses spend

twice as much time in jail as non-ill individuals and are more likely to commit suicide. Lastly are

Episodes of Violence. There are approximately 1,000 homicides among the estimated 20,000

total homicides in the U.S. are committed each year by people with untreated schizophrenia and

bipolar disorder. In 1994 Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report,
"Murder in Families," is 4.3 percent of homicides committed in 1988 were by people with a

history of untreated mental illness (study based on 20,860 murders nationwide). Therefore, my

research question is: What factors allow for the funding for the mentally disabled to lose their



The subjects who participated in my study come from many backgrounds with various

different incomes. About 23 people were involved with my research. I posted my survey

questions online individually and random people replied to it. The website that I uploaded my

survey questions to is called Reddit. As well as posting up my questions on like, I printed out my

survey and handed it out to some people. Interviewee 1 is a man middle aged around 30 with

serious mental illness problems. The income and religion for this man hasn't came up.

Interviewee 2 is a young lady at the age of 18. She is an American Jewish young lady. She has

dyslexia, this is considered to be a mental disorder. Like I said earlier I posted my questions

online. The internet that I used is Reddit.


The materials that were involved with this were my laptop and paper. The use of the

laptop was for research and for the inter-web. Paper was for the printed out survey.


I used to go to school at Fairfax High School for my first year of high school, and I met

this girl who had a severe case of epilepsy. Epilepsy is a neurological disorder marked by sudden

recurrent episodes of sensory disturbance, loss of consciousness, or convulsions, associated with

abnormal electrical activity in the brain. This girl had the worst case of it, she has no control over
her body, she cant talk or walk on her own. Seeing her and her friends everyday getting judged

and being stared at.. When I started this project I wanted to get in contact with her mom, but her

mom was so busy with her daughter that I didnt want to impose on them. So I thought to my self

so if i cant get involved that way maybe ill go to an organization and ask someone for facts and

someone to mentor me but when I went and asked them they were just to busy for a high school

kid. At that point I gave up on having a mentor. So I tried to go more in depth with my research

about places where the mentally impaired community could go if they needed support with

they're living quarters or other necessities. All I could find on camps and homes that the mentally

impaired could go to, to get help. All the camps and what not were in different states. Then I

looked up Psychiatric hospitals and there were a lot in the Hollywood area but they all cost a lot

of money and then there were these affordable homes. These affordable homes were more

for veterans and homeless people making there way up in society. Why not create some sort of

homeless shelter for the mentally impaired folks? After dealing with this how could someone not

be mad? So I researched even more, and hit a dead end. November twenty-fourth I started to

think that maybe I should change the view of my project. Instead of focusing on the funding

point of view only. I should focus my attention on how it makes them feel to be neglected, and

not having anywhere to go at the end of the day. Only those who have money can go to good

homes but for those who don't have money it is really hard to find a good place to live. I also

want to focus on how the word mentally disabled retarded makes that community feel, and

see if it is appropriate for out century to be using that label. Find out what our government is

really doing for this community except taking away the funding. December I looked up the

history on mental health and it was quite interesting, just reading the evolution of how we

through they were a descendent form god to throwing them on the streets! I read some articles
about how children with mental health problems were just thrown out of there foster home and

had no where els to go, soon after getting put in jail. It really just made me sad, for heavens sakes

they are just children. I thought to my self I should do interviews with these people and get close

and personal but then I am not eighteen so I can't walk in there and start asking folks questions.

Soon after I decided I should do a survey instead of an interview. I researched different

techniques for surveying, because I've surveyed before but not good. I got down to busyness and

wrote the questions. I didn't want to go around town asking folks to take my survey so I talk to

one of my friends and he posted his stuff up on this site Reddit, and it worked out for him, so I

did the same.

Survey Questions

How do you personaly define mental disability?

Is the label "mentally disabled" appropriate for our century? Why or why not?

Is the label "mentally disabled" appropriate for our century? Why or why not?

The government has been taking out money from the budget for the mentally impaired, to give

money to other programs. What justifications makes it okay to take money out of mentally

impaired foundation, when they already aren't getting all the help they could get?

Are we as whole doing enough to support our mentally disabled community? Why do you feel

this way?

In your own words how would you define Mental Health/Mental Disability?


The surveys were used to observe the subjects on how they react and how they respond. The

most important question was The government has been taking out money from the budget for the

mentally impaired, to give money to other programs. What justifications makes it okay to take
money out of mentally impaired foundation, when they already aren't getting all the help they

could get? On this question I got a lot of answers. One of the answers i got was this Politicians

are able to pilfer our pockets because, mostly, these people are forgotten by society. The public

doesn't know, they don't want to know, and they turn away from what they don't want to see.

These are amazing people, damned forever because they were born different. They have a

genuine, unfiltered love for life and society has done its best to put them in a hole.

Every year, we get everybody together and march at the state capitol building, demanding the

funding necessary to grant these human beings a decent life. And every year more money

disappears. From someone who works in the system. One man waited 10 years for help and you

know what he is still waitng. The neglect isn't just happening here in the United States It's

happening everywhere.

Discussion & Conclusion

In conclusion, just because theses people don't think the same as we do, does not mean that they

aren't human, doesn't mean that they are less of a human than us. The importance of the results is

to bring arise the flaws in our system and make people realize that the neglect these people get is

wrong, and it shouldn't happen. Now the big picture for this project is to help spread the word

about what has been going on under our noses.

From this project, I have learned more about they way our government works and how in

depth this really goes, and how much farther I have to go to reach my goal, I have learned how

just telling someone have a good day, can dramatically change there entire day and think to ones

self that maybe this is the day that things will change. The way one person perceives another

person can get passed down to other individuals and start a chain all based on gossip. If we just
stop and rethink out actions and how we have been mistreating the mentally impaired people I

feel that maybe things will change, we just need to clear our minds of the stigma. I have

personally been truly affected by these people I have talked to.

The strength of my project was that I loved it; I am passionate about it. I had a personal

connection to it because I cared about the topic that I chose and I desired to help them no matter

how long it would take. I cannot deny that I was very stressed on what to write because there are

so many ways I can go at doing this project I couldn't choose but at the end of the day i am very

happy on what I chose. The weaknesses were in how I conducted my project because the not

every question that I put up on reddit was answered, I had to put up my questions up again and

again. I had a serious commitment issue was big because even though my passion for my project

was great, I could never just put it on the top of my list of priorities.


"Stigma, Discrimination against Mentally Ill Are Common." USA Today. Gannett, 12 Jan. 2015.

Web. 15 May 2015.

"Causes of Mental Illness." WebMD. WebMD, n.d. Web. 15 May 2015.

"" Mental Health Myths and Facts. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 May 2015.

Cost of Not Caring: Nowhere to Go." USA Today. Gannett, 12 Jan. 2015. Web. 28 May 2015.


"Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI)." Mild Cognitive Impairment Causes. N.p., n.d. Web. 28

May 2015

"Consequences of Non-treatment - Treatment Advocacy Center." Consequences of Non-

treatment - Treatment Advocacy Center. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 May 2015.

"Unite For Sight." A Brief History of Mental Illness and the U.S. Mental Health Care System.

N.p., n.d. Web. 28 May 2015

"Cost of Not Caring: Stigma Set in Stone." USA Today. Gannett, 12 Jan. 2015. Web. 12 Mar.


Rubric rating submitted on: June 6, 2016 at 12:40:11 PM PDT by
Expert Proficient Apprentice Novice
4 3 2 1

Introduction Clearly identifies Limited discussion Minimal discussion Little or no

[Abstract, and discusses of research focus of research focus discussion of
introduction, research focus and and question. and question. research focus and
literature review, question. Research Research focus is Research focus is question.
reasoning for focus is clearly less well-grounded not well-grounded Research focus not
research, and grounded in in previous research. in previous research. grounded in
research question] previous research. Significance of the Significance of the previous research.
Proficient3 Significance of the research is not as research is not Significance of the
research question is clearly identified clearly identified research is not
clearly identified (how it adds to (how it adds to identified (how it
(how it adds to previous research). previous research). adds to previous
previous research). Hypotheses/predicti Hypotheses/predicti research).
Hypotheses or ons are described ons are not well Hypotheses/predicti
predicted outcomes but not as well articulated. ons are poorly
are clearly articulated. articulated or are
articulated. absent.

Methodology Provides accurate, Description of how Description of how Description of how

Apprentice2 thorough description the data was the data was the data was
of how the data was collected, what/how collected, what/how collected, what/how
collected, what/how many data sources many data sources many data sources
many data sources were analyzed, plan were analyzed, plan were analyzed, plan
were analyzed, plan of analysis or of analysis or of analysis or
of collection and measurement measurement measurement
analysis (qualitative instrument, research instrument, research instrument, research
or quantitative), context is adequate context is somewhat context is very
research context. but limited. confusing/not confusing/not
Clearly and Research context clearly articulated. articulated
accurately describes and Research context sufficiently.
research context and subject(s)/populatio and Research context
subject(s)/populatio n description is subject(s)/populatio and
n. Reflections on adequate but n is not clearly subject(s)/populatio
positionality/reflexi limited. Reflections articulated. n is severely limited
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collection and vity and how it may vity and how it may positionality/reflexi
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Interpretation is collection and collection and influence data
thorough and interpretation is interpretation is collection and
insightful. adequate but limited and lacks interpretation is
limited. insight. severely limited,
lacks insight, or is

Results [Data Results are clearly Results are Results are not very Results are not
Synthesis, explained in a explained but not as clearly explained, clearly explained,
Descriptions, and comprehensive level clearly, level of level of detail is level of detail is
Analysis] of detail and are detail is not as insufficient, and severely
Novice1 well-organized. sufficient, and there there are more insufficient, and
Tables/figures are some organizational there are serious
clearly and organizational issues. organizational
concisely convey issues. Tables/figures are issues.
and describe the Tables/figures are not clear/concise in Tables/figures are
data. Statistical not as clear/concise conveying and not clear/concise in
analyses (if used) in conveying and describing the data. conveying and
are appropriate and describing the data. Statistical analyses describing the data.
are accurately Statistical analyses (if used) are Statistical analyses
interpreted. (if used) are inappropriate tests (if used) are
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are not accurately accurately and/or are not
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Conclusions Interpretations/analy Interpretations/analy Interpretations/analy Interpretations/analy

[Conclusion, sis of results are sis of results are sis of results lacking sis of results
Research thoughtful and sufficient but in thoughtfulness severely lacking in
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Novice1 clearly informed by thoughtfulness and clearly informed by insight, are not
the studys results, insight, are not as the studys results, informed by the
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of how the study hypotheses/predicte Discussion of how Discussion of how
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enhances the present Discussion of how and/or enhances the and/or enhances the
scholarship in this the study relates to present scholarship present scholarship
area. Suggestions and/or enhances the in this area is in this area is
for further research present scholarship limited. severely limited
in this area are in this area is Suggestions for and/or absent
insightful and adequate. further research in altogether.
thoughtful. Self- Suggestions for this area are very Suggestions for
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thorough and this area are Self-reflections are this area are
meaningful. adequate. Self- very limited. severely limited
reflections are and/or absent.
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and/or absent.

Documentation of Cites all data Cites most data Cites some data Does not cite
Sources, Quality of obtained from other obtained from other obtained from other sources.
Sources sources. APA sources. APA sources. Citation Sources are
Proficient3 citation style is citation style is used style is either disproportionately
accurately used in in both text and inconsistent or non-scholarly and
both text and bibliography. incorrect. do not clearly relate
bibliography. Sources are Sources are not to the research
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scholarly and clearly and relate to the and relate to the
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Spelling, No spelling, Minimal spelling, Noticeable spelling, Excessive spelling

Punctuation, & punctuation, or punctuation, or punctuation, and and/or grammar
Grammar grammar mistakes. grammar mistakes. grammar mistakes. mistakes.

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correct headings & correct headings & Headings & formatting
subheadings subheadings almost subheadings less Headings and
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