Christie administration satisfies suit requiring N.J. find homes for mentally ill
TRENTON -- The Christie administration has met the requirements of an eight-year-old lawsuit settlement that required New Jersey to provide community housing for people with significant mental illnesses and promptly discharge patients from state hospitals once they have been medically cleared to leave.
The settlement, reached during the Corzine administration in 2009, produced 1,356 more supervised apartments for people with mental illness, according to a joint statement from acting state Human Services Commissioner Elizabeth Connolly, and the two legal advocacy groups that sued on patients' behalf.
New Jersey exceeded the number of homes beyond the 1,065 the settlement required, according to the statement.
The agreement also led to the release of nearly 300 patients who had been medically approved to leave a state psychiatric hospital but remained -- some for years -- because they did not have an affordable place to live where treatment services nearby.