The legal definition of a mental illness under the Mental Health Act 1990 is “a condition characterized by the presence of symptoms such as delusions, hallucinations, serious disorder of thought form, a severe disturbance of mood, or sustained or repeated irrational behavior, which seriously impairs, either temporarily or permanently, the mental functioning of a person” (Karras et al., 2006, para. 2). Typically this does not include those who suffer from anxiety disorders, depression, or substance abuse. This study examined the policies and procedures associated with mentally ill or emotionally disturbed persons (EDPs) in Oregon jails. Data from all 36 counties in Oregon was attained by gaining phone numbers or emails for administrative personnel from each jail. Access to jail standards, as well as policies and procedures, was approved by each county. Policies relating to how EDPs are processed at intake, how outside resources are brought in for assessments, how medical/mental health evaluate and treatment recommendations upon release were analyzed. Each county procedure was discussed, concluding with a comparison of each county and determination of which procedures are more effective. The foundation of this recommendation is to provide further insight so EDPs in jail receive appropriate treatment.

Exit Requirement

Professional Project

Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Criminal Justice

Committee Chair

Misty Weitzel

Committee Member

Terry Gingerich

Committee Member

Ron Glaus


mentally ill, edp, Oregon jail, Oregon, jail policies



Type (DCMI Terms)


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