AP7_Lecture_Ch19

AP7_Lecture_Ch19 - Law Society and the Mental Health...

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Comer,  Abnormal Psychology , 7e Northampton Community College Law, Society, and the Mental  Health Profession Chapter 19
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2 Comer, Abnormal Psychology, 7e Law, Society, and the  Mental Health Profession Psychological dysfunctioning of an individual does  not occur in isolation It is influenced – sometimes caused – by societal and social  pressures It affects the lives of relatives, friends, and acquaintances  Clinical scientists and practitioners do not conduct  their work in isolation They are affecting and being affected by other institutions  of society
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3 Comer, Abnormal Psychology, 7e Law, Society, and the  Mental Health Profession Two social institutions have a particularly strong impact on  the mental health profession – the legislative and judicial  systems – collectively called “the legal field” This relationship has two distinct aspects: Mental health professionals often play a role in the criminal justice system  (“psychology in law”) The legislative and judicial systems act upon the clinical field, regulating  certain aspects of mental health care (“law in psychology”) The intersection between the mental health field and the legal and  judicial systems are collectively referred to as “forensic psychology”
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4 Comer, Abnormal Psychology, 7e Psychology in Law: How Do Clinicians Influence  the Criminal Justice System? To arrive at just and appropriate punishments, the  courts need to assess a defendant’s responsibility for  committing a crime and his or her capacity to  contribute toward a defense  For example, people who suffer from “severe mental  instability” may not be responsible for their actions or be  able to defend themselves in court These determinations are guided by the opinions of  mental health professionals
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5 Comer, Abnormal Psychology, 7e When people accused of crimes are judged to be  mentally unstable, they are usually sent to a mental  institution for treatment  This process is called criminal commitment Several forms: Mentally unstable at the time of the crime = found not guilty by  reason of insanity (NGRI) and committed until improved enough  to be released Mentally unstable at the time of trial = committed until competent  to stand trial  Psychology in Law: How Do Clinicians Influence  the Criminal Justice System?
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6 Comer, Abnormal Psychology, 7e The determination of mental instability has  stirred many arguments Some consider the judgments “loopholes” Others argue that a legal system cannot be just  unless it allows for extenuating circumstances, 
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This note was uploaded on 01/31/2012 for the course 830 340 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '08 term at Rutgers.

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AP7_Lecture_Ch19 - Law Society and the Mental Health...

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