Judge Steven Leifman: Enhancing Public Safety
Judge Steven Leifman, Special Advisor on Criminal Justice and Mental Health to the Florida Supreme Court, talks about his involvement with the intersection of mental health and criminal justice.
Part 1: Judge Steven Leifman tracks his career from public defender to judge assigned to the jail division where he noticed the growing number of defendants with mental illness and one dramatic, life-changing and law-changing case.
Part 2: The mental health crisis: With three times the national average of mental illness, the Dade County Jail is the largest psychiatric facility in Florida with 1,200 people a day on medication. The mental health system is antiquated, fragmented and inadequate and the mentally ill people keep cycling through the criminal justice system. Bringing the stakeholders together, the community figures out a better way to fundamentally change how they dealt with mental illness.
Part 3: Collaborating for social change, engaging them to be part of the solution. The moral authority of a judge to bring people to the table. Judge Leifman also gives us a glimpse into his own life and how travel in India has affected him.
Part 4: On being a lawyer and becoming a judge.
See also Judge Leifman's recent article in Future Trends in State Courts: http://www.ncsc.org/Web%20Documents/FutureTrends2009.pdf which begins on page 122 of the periodical.