Advocates for the mentally ill want lawmakers to avoid what they call devastating cuts to services in next year's North Carolina state budget.
More than 1,000 people -- including patients and their families -- visited the Legislature for their annual rally Wednesday. They want to protect and improve treatment for people with mental illness, the developmentally disabled and substance abusers.
The event came the same day House members discussed options to reduce mental health funding to help narrow a $4 billion-plus state budget gap for next year. One option would reduce service funds by more than $50 million.
Sandra Buckman with The ARC (ark) of Beaufort County said lawmakers needed to be reminded how vulnerable the consumers of state-funded services would be if drastic cuts are made.