Put roofs over heads
Regarding “Vote no on diverting vital mental health funds” (Open Forum, Oct. 8): Catherine Lauren Rettagliata could not have been more wrong in her argument that Proposition 2 would somehow reduce access to treatment for people with severe mental illness. With severely mentally ill people making up as much as a third of California’s homeless population of 134,000, there is a very strong argument that permanent housing is itself perhaps the single-most effective form of treatment for this population. Prop. 2 provides it by authorizing $130 million a year from Prop. 63 Mental Health Services Act funds to house the most severe of the severely mentally ill.
That’s why Prop. 63 author and Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg is one of Prop. 2’s strongest supporters. That’s also why the California chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness is another key backer of the measure. Rettagliata is to be commended for fighting to protect funding for mental health programs. Hopefully, California voters will recognize that the best program for tens of thousands of severely mentally ill people would be a roof over their heads. Roberto Jimenez, CEO, Mutual Housing