The Definition of Insanity, previewed at Miami’s Film Festival last week, is an approachable film about better ways for justice systems to address mental health. Rather than getting buried in the mechanisms of creating such a program, the film follows the lives of three participants in Miami’s alternative program, the Jail Diversion Program. The film’s person-centered narrative may serve to convince those who are on the fence about alternatives to punishment for people whose primary need is health-based but who are criminally charged or at risk of criminal sanctions. Despite the name, the film is uplifting and despite the subject, it is approachable and resonates with community members of all backgrounds.
When the film is released nationwide on PBS in April, The Equitas Project anticipates it will drive support of their Model Law project, a Roadmap to Diverting the Incompetent Client (Colorado’s pilot of the Miami Model), and their upcoming Care Not Cuffs Campaign, all of which will pull at various levers of the system and will be driven forward through public support and awareness harnessed by The Equitas Project.
The Equitas Project and the David & Laura Merage Foundation are proud supporters of The Definition of Insanity and hope that this film will move the needle on public support for alternatives to punishment for those with mental health needs.