Portland City Club: on mental illness and other stuff

Portland Oregon’s City Club is a non-partisan membership organization which hosts national and local speakers on a variety of issues. Members of City Club join committees to distill issues of the day and some of these committee’s, over the years, have issued reports about mental illness, alcoholism and addiction, homelessness and poverty. The Club has made dozens of it’s reports available to the public through its web site.

Sam Adams

Sam Adams

In the last few decades it’s been a stuffy muddle of humdrum local gossip and posturing, but there’s hope under the leadership of former mayor Sam Adams, who knows how to throw a party.

Read – Improving the delivery of mental health services in Multnomah County, April 2011. Presented by City Club members Elena Balduzzi, Linda Elliott, LaJean Humphries, James Kahan, Edward Keenan, B.J. Seymour, Greg Shortreed, John Swetnam – lead writer, Tamsen Wassell – chair. Staff Mark Anderson, research adviser, Tony Iaccarino, research & policy director.

Read – Information report on the mayor’s 12-point plan for the homeless, February 1990. Presented by Laura Gamble, Lou Savage, Alf Siddall, Bill Walker, Janet Wolfe, Pam Thomas, Chair.

Read – Informational report on involuntary civil commitment, January 1988. Presented by Ted Falk, Bill Kralovec, Kay Mannion, Linda Stolz, Peg Trippe, Pat Sheridan, Chairperson.

Read – Report on homelessness as a “premiere issue” for the city of Portland, 1986. Presented by Roger Bachman, William Long, Thomas Ralmer, Reymundo Marin, Robert Castagna, Sally McCracken, Campbell Groner, Joan Smith, W. E. Hunter, Charlotte T. Kennedy, Chair.

Read – Information Report on the insanity defense, May 1985. Presented by Davis Glass, William Snouffer, J. William Savage, Jeffrey L. Rogers, Chair.

Read – Report on Multifamily housing for elderly and disabled persons (State Measure No. 2), April 1982. Betty Burt, Andrew Gerlicher, Roxanne Nelson, Thomas G. Taxelius, Sarah Aiken-Kintz.

Read – Report on guarantees mentally handicapped voting rights, unless adjudicated incompetent to vote (State Measure No. 2), September 1980. Presented by Walter R. Grande, Thomas K. Hooper, Jay Jacobsmuhlen, Lynette Mannion, Lisa Uhlmann, Gordon V. Walker, Karen Walsdorf, Robert L. Weil, Jan K. Kitchel, Chairman.

State Measure No. 2 Purpose: “Measure proposes constitutional amendment to eliminate present language which prohibits voting by any ‘idiot or mentally diseased person,’ changing it to guarantee full voting rights to mentally handicapped persons, unless they have been declared in the manner provided by law to be incompetent to vote.”

Read – Report on the urban Indian in Portland, 1975. The Committee: George W. Dana, Alan G. Deale, Wiliam N. Gross, George A. LaValley, James R. Sitzman, Bruce L. Smith, John S. Strawn, Gordon V. Walker, David E. Wilis, Stephen R. Frank, Chairman.

Read – Report on legal sanctions of marijuana, April 1972. The Committee: Ernest Bonyhadi, Fred M. Buchwalter, Philip D. Chadsey, Wiliam Gittelsohn, Frederick A. M. Kingery, M.D., A. Leighton Platt, Donald W. Green II, George D. Leonard and Charles M. Grossman, M.D., Chairman.

Read – Report on Services for Disturbed Children, March 1971. The Committee: Harry J. Beeman, John F. Cramer, Jr., Verne A. Davis, Victor W. Laine and Carl R. Neil, Chairman.

Read – Report on act authorizing domiciliary state hospital for aged mentally ill, 1952. Presented by Jason Hervin, John B. McKenna, Dr. Frank Perlman, Gilbert Sussmen, James Wyatt, Robert B. Welch, J. Barron Fitzpatrick, Chairman.

Read – [Report on] Oregon mental health laws, September 1951. Presented by Harris Dusenbery, A. S. Frohman, John E. Huisman, Frederic F. Janney, Harry M. Kenin, Thomas McCamant, Dr. C. V. Morrison, Robert L. Weiss, Dr. James C. Caughlan, Acting Chairman, Dr. J. F. Cramer, Chairman.

Read – Report on needy aged persons public assistance act, October 1950. Presented by Nathan Berkman, Delmar Brown, Rev. C. Corwin Calavan, Henry Corbett, Jr., Peter Leineweber, Peter Twist, Leo Smith, Chairman.

None of these reports, as far as we can tell, were read by actual decision-makers, but they reflect the interests, issues, language and solutions of their time. As this web site is an archive of all things Oregon and mental health, we include these items for the consideration of history.