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Adriana Wagner, a counselor: Mental illness is a ‘crisis’ in society

When a person with mental illness ends up in the criminal justice system, many times, they end up in jail because there's nowhere else for them to go.

As a mental health counselor working in the Hillsborough County jail, Adriana Wagner sees first-hand the impact our lack of resources for mental illness has on our criminal justice system.

With massive funding cuts to state mental hospitals, prisons and jails have become some of America’s largest mental health institutions.

People with mental illness often wind up behind bars because our society has nowhere else to put them.

Wagner shares some of her stories from inside the Hillsborough County Jail Mental Health Stabilization Unit because she feels that stopping the stigma surrounding mental illness is critical to addressing what she calls a crisis in our society today.

More: Question about mental health? Resources connect you to need-to-know information

Related: By the numbers: 14 interesting facts, statistics on mental illness

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