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Rockdale County Justice and Mental Health Partnership Project

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Competitive Discretionary
Awardee County
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2021, $550,000)

Rockdale County will develop and implement a Holistic Approach to Public Safety and Public Health in Rockdale County for people with mental illness (MI) and co-occurring mental illness and substance abuse (CMISA)” offering collaborative programs targeting individuals with MI/CMISA entering the justice system. Primary activities include:

· Developing a BJA approved comprehensive plan.

· Implementing the plan to increase community capacity for mental health advocacy and wraparound services for people with MI/CMISA.

· Implementing the plan to provide programmatic support and capacity building for criminal justice professionals and community supervision.

· Training for criminal justice professionals, service providers, and awareness to the community recommended by BJA TTA partners.

· Develop sustainability plan to continue collaboration programs.

Expected deliverables include:

· Develop a coordinated and documented approach to implementing or enhancing services for individuals with MI/CMISA involved in the justice system corresponding to an activity or planned as a cross-system approach.

· Initiate the implementation phase once the requirements of the planning phase are complete and continue to implement for the remaining time of the grant.

· Engage in regular training and technical assistance activities with the BJA TTA partner.

· Outline plans for obtaining necessary support to sustain and continue the proposed collaboration program following the conclusion of federal support.

The program-specific priority areas to be addressed:

· Promote effective strategies by law enforcement to identify and reduce the risk of harm to individuals with MI/CMISA and to public safety.

· Promote effective strategies to expand the use of mental health courts and related services.

· Propose interventions that have been shown by empirical evidence reduce recidivism.

The lead applicant is Superior Court Judge Nancy Bills and Jennifer Hibbard, CEO, Viewpoint Health. Key Partners: County Commissioner, Dr. Doreen Williams; Sheriff Eric Levett; Collaboration Team; and Brenda Ernst, Stepping-Up.

The jurisdiction’s population is 90,312 with 51.8% African Americans, 36.1% White, and 12.1% other races including Hispanic and Asian.

The target population
1,086 individuals with MI/CMISA annually entering the Rockdale justice system
3,612 individuals with MI/CMISA annually presenting for services

The number to be served will be determined during the planning process, assessment of agency capacity and resource inventory.

To address the problem, the project will utilize JMHCP’s structure and BJA TTAs guidance to develop and implement a coordinated approach for services for MI/CMISA individuals entering the justice system.

Date Created: December 7, 2021