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Florida ranks 44th in the country for access to mental health care. And one of the quickest and easiest ways to get it is by invoking a 1971 law called the Baker Act. It allows for anyone threatening to harm themselves or others to be involuntarily committed to a psychiatric facility for 72 hours. Committed, a VICE News Tonight special report, delves into the experiences of three families in crisis, each struggling with a child’s mental illness, whose lives intersect for 72 hours at Gracepoint Wellness, one of the largest and oldest children’s crisis facilities in Florida. Isobel Yeung speaks with counselors, families, law enforcement, and school officials to investigate how the Baker Act’s patchwork system of short-term commitments is increasingly becoming a stand-in for a more comprehensive and long-term mental health care system.
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