baker act

WOKANDAPIX / PIXABAY CREATIVE COMMONS

The arrest of a six-year-old girl with special needs in Jacksonville earlier this month is renewing calls to change Florida's Baker Act. 

South Beach Jazz Festival

Happy New Year Sundialers, here’s a rundown of the Thursday, Jan. 2, episode of Sundial:

Tampa Bay Times’ Investigation Looks At The ‘Baker Act’

The Tampa Bay Times recently released an investigation about the ‘Baker Act,’ the Florida law that allows families to involuntarily institutionalize people considered impaired because of mental illness. The investigation revealed that the law is impacting children as young as 6 throughout Florida. 

MSD Public Safety Commission
Lily Oppenheimer / WLRN

A commission that's investigating the Parkland shooting met privately Thursday to review the confessed gunman's confidential health records.

But first, the panel's chair offered some details about what law enforcement officials have learned regarding Nikolas Cruz's history with behavioral health treatment. 

Associated Press

Alarmed by his repeated visits to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and his infatuation with his sibling’s notoriety as a mass murderer, prosecutors and police moved Tuesday to keep the younger brother of Parkland shooter Nikolas Cruz locked up on trespassing charges and to strip him of his ability to own a gun.

Florida lawmakers are debating several measures aimed at preventing mass shootings, and some law enforcement officials are calling for another one: Making it easier to detain certain people suffering from mental illness.

But the leader of the state’s largest psychologist lobbying group cautions that unfairly puts too many people in the crosshairs.

Using Baker Act On Minors Comes Under Scrutiny

Feb 11, 2018
PIXABAY.COM

Between summer 2015 and 2016, kids under the age of 18 in Florida were subjected to an involuntary psychiatric exam 32,000 times – almost a 50 percent increase over five years.

DAVID ADAME / AP

A half dozen homeless people in Miami-Dade County were involuntarily committed to the hospital for evaluation as Hurricane Irma continued its course towards South Florida.

Now, a month later, the Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust has evaluated whether that was the right move.

The week before Irma hit, hundreds of people living in downtown Miami, many close to the seawalls in places that heavily flood like Bayfront Park, continued to refuse spots in a homeless shelter.

David Adame / AP

Miami police intends to involuntarily commit homeless individuals starting Friday if they refuse to move off the streets. Volunteer outreach teams through the Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust began placing individuals in shelters Tuesday morning and will continue those efforts through Thursday.

“By Friday morning it is my intention, those individuals who refuse to leave the streets for various reasons--almost all of which are mental health and or substance abuse-related--I would be moving to have those individuals Baker Acted,” said Ron Book, chairman of the Homeless Trust.

Florida judges can’t use videoconferencing to involuntarily commit the mentally ill, the Florida Supreme Court ruled Thursday.

The number of children taken into protective custody for mental health examinations has surged across the state.

BearTruck 2009/flickr

A major overhaul of the state’s mental health system died when the Florida Legislature adjourned early.

Both chambers seemed ready to revamp the delivery of mental health and substance abuse services. The bill’s main focus was changing the way those services are administered in order to better coordinate care among agencies.