City Councilman Dale Francisco performed a very real disservice to the American Civil Liberties Union when he blamed the ACLU for the closing of state asylums. The ACLU had nothing to do with the closings. (My wife was working at Camarillo State Hospital as a psychiatric nurse at the time.)
For the uninformed Mr. Francisco and the general public, the state hospital in Camarillo was closed by the Landerman, Petris, Short Act of the state legislature in 1970, with the approval of Governor Ronald Reagan. With it, money was supposed to follow the state hospital patients into their home communities for housing and treatment of the mentally ill.
This money was misappropriated by Governor Reagan for other projects and has never been replaced. The community, by this trick of the Claifornia legislature and Governor Reagan, bears full responsibility for the care of the mentally illl on our streets.
The people who do not like the situation can place blame where it belongs: Governor Ronald Reagan and the California legislature.