Psychologists are responsible for providing a full range of professional psychological services. Psychologists also aid staff members through program design, consultation, and training. Services for inmates include evaluations and therapy. As part of the admissions procedures, newly incarcerated inmates are placed on call-out for an interview. Counseling may be brief term, or long term, and may be done on an individual or group basis. To see the unit psychologist, the inmate must submit an inmate request to staff member form to psychology services.
It is not uncommon for people to experience feelings of depression and hopelessness while in jail or prison, particularly if they are newly incarcerated, are serving a long sentence, are experiencing family problems or problems getting along with other inmates, or receive bad news. Sometimes, inmates consider committing suicide due to the pressure they may experience. Staff are trained to monitor inmates for signs of suicidality, and are trained to refer all concerns to the Psychology Department. However, staff do not always see what inmates see. If an inmate is personally experiencing any of the problems noted above, or if an inmate is showing signs of depression (sadness, tearfulness, lack of enjoyment in usual activities), withdrawal(staying away from others, reducing phone calls and/or visits), or hopelessness (giving away possessions, stating that “there is nothing to live for”), a staff member should be alerted right away. This immediate response can save a life.