Suicides in San Diego County Jail: A System Failing People with Mental Illness

disability rights californiaThis publication from Disability Rights California (DRC) examines conditions in San Diego County jails in 2015. After visiting the jails, talking to prisoners and staff, and looking at records, DRC discovered a disturbingly high suicide rate. Additionally, DRC found issues with the treatment of prisoners with disabilities. The DRC investigation report sets forth findings and recommendations for reform, and examines four interconnected aspects of San Diego County’s jail and mental health systems that contributed to the high suicide rate: over-incarceration of people with mental health needs; deficiencies in suicide prevention; failure to provide adequate mental health treatment and the harms of solitary confinement; and a lack of meaningful independent jail oversight.