Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2021, $1,200,000)
Macomb County, Michigan in partnership with Families Against Narcotics (FAN), will create the Macomb County Prosecutor’s Office/FAN REDIRECT Diversion Program to reduce the number of overdoses, assist people in getting treatment for addiction, reduce drug-related crimes, and improve the relationship between law enforcement and the community. Problem to be addressed In 2019, drug-related deaths in Macomb County increased by 27.8%, heroin-related deaths increased by 9.7%, deaths involving fentanyl increased 204% compared to the prior year. The Marshall Project, a non-profit journalism organization, deemed Macomb County “at-risk” in the national opioid epidemic, citing low MOUD provider rates (medications for opioid use disorder) and high opioid-overdose death rates. The overall goal of REDIRECT is to reduce both drug-related crime and overdose mortalities among high-need/high-risk people in Macomb County who may have committed a minor, non-violent, drug-related offense by offering them a referral to treatment and continuum of care, in lieu of arrest and prosecution of criminal charges. Our objectives are to launch REDIRECT in all 18 police departments within the county, provide a continuum of care to participants for 12 months to support their sobriety, and to reduce the stigma of addiction within law enforcement and the community. The Prosecutor’s Office will assign a special prosecutor to the REDIRECT program. Once criteria for qualification is finalized, the special prosecutor will have the final decision on whether a person can be diverted to REDIRECT. Officers who encounter possible participants will make recommendations to the special prosecutor. The special prosecutor will work closely with our partnering organization, Families Against Narcotics (FAN) once cases are identified. If a person has been in compliance of program protocols for one year, the case would be dismissed. Macomb County has partnered with FAN to carry out REDIRECT. They are a grassroots organization known and respected by law enforcement throughout the county. They will provide a continuum of care for 12 months after enrollment into REDIRECT to provide a range of supportive services. REDIRECT will ensure identified participants will receive the treatment they need rather than a jail sentence. FAN’s Peer Recovery Coaches will work closely with REDIRECT participants as well as their family members to ensure there are no violations for one year. REDIRECT will also assist participants in accessing sober living and preparing for and finding employment.