Working group still grappling with potential forensic mental health facility

By Andrew Cromarty
October 7th, 2022

In 2011, Hurricane Irene forced the Vermont State Hospital to close its doors for good, leading to a shortage of housing options across the state. More than 10 years later, state leaders and care providers still struggle to provide the housing and care that many psychiatric patients desperately need.

“Unlike most states, we have no forensic facility capability. So, what's happening right now is that people are generally either held in a state psychiatric facility or in a correctional facility awaiting determinations,” said Sen. Dick Sears, (D-Bennington).

A working group made up of mental health experts, prosecutors, health care professionals, victims’ representatives and individuals with lived mental illness experience have been look...

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