It's not a coincidence that crazy news headlines often correlate with Florida. Whether it took place in Florida or a Floridian was involved, there seems to be no shortage of news about something crazy going down involving the Sunshine State. Between being one of the most heavily populated states and that mental health care in Florida wasn't the best in 2018, we can't say all the bad press is really surprising.
According to The State of Mental Health in America 2018, provided by Mental Health America, Florida Ranks 44th out of 50 on a system of ranking where 1 indicates that a state provides the most access to insurance and mental health treatment and a ranking of 50 indicates the least level of access to insurance and mental health treatment in the U.S. Florida ranks last in the U.S. Per Capita Mental Health Support.
Mental Health America concluded a study showed that the national average of adult Americans who did not receive treatment for mental illness is 55.8%, while 61.7% of adults in Florida did not receive treatment. Additionally, suicide counts are higher than homicides in 62 of Florida’s 67 counties. 93% of the state experienced more suicides than homicides in 2016.
Following the 2018 Parkland School shooting carried out by a 20-year-old with very obvious ongoing mental health problems, it became even more apparent that Florida's mental health care system was lacking. But not much has been done to remedy the problem yet.
Over the summer a man who was upset over a recent breakup purposely swerved into a concrete median wall in Tampa, causing a 5-vehicle pileup and ultimately killing a father riding bikes with his two young sons and a two month old puppy.
As mental health awareness is becoming a less-taboo subject, positive outcomes are becoming more common. It was announced recently that the Florida Bar is removing mental health questions from its application to end stigmas that lawyers face when it comes to mental illness issues.
Lawyers of Florida, may we present: #StigmaFreeYLD.This Mental Health & Wellness campaign - aimed at ending ALL stigmas that lawyers face when it comes to mental illness issues - begins today and will last as LONG as needed.Watch our first video here: https://t.co/09gaocmU41 pic.twitter.com/qIyB5qWC2A
Although it does not appear that 2019 is on track to be considerably better, there are also several crisis hotlines that anyone in need of help can contact without fear of judgment including the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, National Hopeline Network, and even a text line for anyone who feels more comfortable texting.