Sen. Codey: We need to end violence

Sen. Richard Codey (D-Essex/Morris) says mental health issues

Sen. Richard Codey (D-Essex/Morris) says mental health issues need to be a top priority for New Jersey.

EDISON - As President Obama today laid out his proposal to end gun violence, state Sen. Richard Codey (D-Essex/Morris) is calling on Gov. Christie to make mental health issues a top priority for New Jersey.

Codey also says that the ban New Jersey already has against military-style weapons needs to be implemented throughout the United States.

Codey says the governor has been slow to implement laws that would prioritize mental health care even though Christie stressed the need to improve the state's mental health system after the Sandy Hook shooting.

Under the so-called "involuntary outpatient commitment law," judges would have the power to demand mentally ill people to get medication or therapy if they pose a danger to themselves or others. If they're unwilling to comply, judges would be able to commit the person to a psychiatric facility.

During his own time serving as acting governor, Codey created a task force on mental health and established laws making mental health a top priority for New Jersey.

The senator has long been an outspoken advocate for mental health awareness and treatment. He and his wife, Mary Jo, have shared publicly about her struggle with severe postpartum depression.

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