Challenges for those who are mentally ill & serving LIFE Sentences –Due to the closing of state hospitals and the high cost of private facilities, prisons have become excessively populated with men, women and children whose mental health status has been criminalized.  Prison exacerbates the illness and fails to provide appropriate treatment.  Mentally ill prisoners often are sent to harsh punishment cells and units which only worsen their conditions.  Families of the mental ill prisoner need to know the laws and how to advocate for their loved ones.  Currently, 73% of all women at SCI Muncy have a mental health diagnosis. SCI Waymart was created to house the male mentally ill population.