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Rhode Island Mental Health Treatment Court (RIMHTC)

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, $511,289)


Rhode Island District Court (RIDC) proposes planning and implementing a statewide pre-plea, pre-sentence Mental Health Treatment Court for individuals with Serious Mental Illness and Co-occurring Mental Illness and Substance Abuse, charged with a misdemeanor.

The Goal of RIMHTC is jail diversion. Successful completion results in jail diversion or reduction of charges, including dismissals. Improving the quality of life by diverting participants into treatment will have a lasting effect on them and their families, communities, and society.

RIMHTC will develop a planning and implementation guide to include the following goals and objectives: 

Goal 1. Develop the RIMHTC program’s capacity to deliver comprehensive case management, treatment, and monitoring appropriate to the risk and need levels of the SMI and CMISA population. 

Objective 1:  Hire one full-time Mental Health Case Manager.

Objective 2:  Provide BJA training to at least 50 community partners.

Objective 3:  Reduce recidivism rates for SMI and CMISA population by 1/3.


Goal 2:   BJA Approval of Implementation for RIMHTC.

Objective 1: Screen and assess eligible participants within two weeks of arraignment.

Objective 2: 25 new admissions to RIMHTC in year one, increasing capacity to 35 in year two and 50 in year three over the project’s life, totaling 110 participants.

Objective 3: Develop three new judicial partnerships within three years.

This proposal addresses the State of Rhode Island and doesn’t include program-specific priority areas.

With RIDC as the lead applicant, in collaboration with Thrive Behavioral Health, RIMHTC will serve 25 clients in year one, increasing to 35 in year two and 50 in year three for a total of 110 clients. The RIMTHC targets the SMI and CMISA population charged with misdemeanor level offenses. In addition, RIMHTC intends to serve participants with high-risk/high-need or low-risk/high need.

Rhode Island is the second-most densely populated state at 1,061,509 people within 1545 square miles. Demographics include: White: 80.46%, Black or African American: 6.77%, Other race: 5.47%, Asian: 3.40%, Two or more races: 3.33%, Native American: 0.50%, and Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander: 0.08%.   Additionally, 4% of RI’s adult population lives with SMI (n=38,000). 

RIMHTC will use a regimen of evidence-based treatment and community supports aided by court leverage, regular hearings, and a focus on creating better outcomes for the individual, community, providers, and the judiciary.

Date Created: December 7, 2021