Closing The Gap: A Closer Look At The 2012 Mental Health Clinic Closures In Chicago

Advocates say the cuts hurt hundreds of at-risk residents and led to more homelessness — and more people in the criminal justice system.

Rahm Emanuel
In this April 22, 2019, file photo, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel waves as he arrives at a news conference outside of the south air traffic control tower at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. Kiichiro Sato / Associated Press
Rahm Emanuel
In this April 22, 2019, file photo, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel waves as he arrives at a news conference outside of the south air traffic control tower at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. Kiichiro Sato / Associated Press

Closing The Gap: A Closer Look At The 2012 Mental Health Clinic Closures In Chicago

Advocates say the cuts hurt hundreds of at-risk residents and led to more homelessness — and more people in the criminal justice system.

For the latest in our series Closing the Gap, Reset is exploring disparities in mental health care and how the pandemic is changing the way we think about this issue. In this episode, we look back on the controversy surrounding former Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s decision to close half of Chicago’s 12 mental health clinics in 2012.

Sheriff Tom Dart shares how he’s working to improve mental health care at Cook County Jail. He was among those who raised concerns about the clinic closures and the impact it might have on his jail population. We also hear from two members of Southside Together Organizing For Power, or STOP Chicago, about the push for mental health resources in Black and brown communities.

GUEST: Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart

Matt Ginsberg-Jaeckle, STOP Chicago board member

Cheryl Miller, public health organizer at STOP Chicago