BUILDING A "HOSPITAL"

EXPANDING PRISONS 

Washington State wants to spend $640 million on the expansion of Western State Hospital.

 

The expansion project will create a brand new 350-bed forensic hospital. 

We say no to this project! We don't need another way to imprison people masquerading as a place where people get treatment. 

What is a forensic hospital?


  • A hospital where the state sends people who have criminal charges to get their "competency" "restored"
  • People at a forensic hospital are not free to leave; they are held until the state or the hospital allow them to go
  • If competency can't be restored, the hospital either "commits" people and continues to hold them or turns them out with no other services




What is "competency"?


  • Competency means that people:
    • can understand the court process and the charges brought against them​ and
    • can work with their lawyer, prepare a defense, make decisions, and speak for themselves if they want to




What is "restoration"?


  • Many times this process involves forcibly medicating people
  • This is not a place where people heal, only where the go to get "sane enough" to be prosecuted.
  • Providers may be doing their best but how much can you help people while contracting with the Department of Corrections?