Three YMG Students Interview Hosts of the Podcast Schizophrenia: 3 Moms in the Trenches
By Marianne O'Hare
Youthcast Media Group®
Student journalists from the Youthcast Media Group were recently invited to ‘turn the tables’ on hosts of the syndicated podcast Schizophrenia: 3 Moms in the Trenches, a show focused on the challenges of having a child with serious mental illness in a health system ill-equipped to handle such complex issues. YMG students have been studying the impact of how those suffering from mental illness in this country are often thrust into the criminal justice system for lack of a better option. The ‘criminalization of mental illness’ is a topic often covered in the “3 Moms” podcast.
Hosts Randye Kaye, Miriam Feldman and Mindy Greiling welcomed questions from YMG’s student journalists: Herndon, Virginia High School students Carmah Owen and Safa Janjua, and Kayla Johnson from Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School. Their questions yielded powerful insights into the tragic and persistent complexities of families struggling with a schizophrenia diagnosis, for which there are few solutions and often many crises that land their children within the criminal justice system.
asked how we ‘decriminalize’ mental health services. “3 Moms” host, Los Angeles artist Miriam (Mimi) Feldman, shared how devastating it is to realize sometimes you have to rely on police intervention, and that can mean standing between your child in crisis and the ‘guy with the gun’. Host Mindy Greiling, a former Minnesota lawmaker, detailed her multiple experiences with law enforcement, saying that “it’s criminal” how we treat mental illness in this country. She notes that people with serious mental illness and people of color are at much higher risk for being killed by police during an episode. She has passed several laws in her state to reduce the burden on families.
Executive Producer and co-host Randye Kaye remarked on how thoughtful and incisive the students’ questions were. Her own son currently sits in jail awaiting a hearing, after being arrested during a mental health episode. In addition to launching the podcast, Kaye, an actor, broadcaster and motivational speaker, is a trainer with the National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI).
The “3 Moms” podcast featuring students from the Youthcast Media Group as well as all of the 80+ episodes can be accessed here.