Second Amendment

Mental Health Providers Worry About NY Gun Law

Mandatory reporting and loss of civil rights deter patients from seeking treatment


“People who have mental health issues should not have guns,” Cuomo said upon passage of the bill in January. “They could hurt themselves. They could hurt other people.”

Many blanched at Cuomo’s comments even as states across the country struggle to achieve a balance between public safety and the rights of the mentally ill on this issue. To many, Cuomo seemed to suggest that anyone with a mental illness â€" a broad swath that includes depression, eating disorders, personality disorders and schizophrenia â€" is dangerous even though studies have shown that those with mental illness are only slightly more likely to commit acts of violence than anyone else. Research shows that they are more likely to be victims of violence. …

Mental health providers and patient advocates say that whether the New York law actually makes the state any safer, it will further stigmatize the mentally ill, weaken doctor-patient confidentiality and undermine the judgment of mental health providers.