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Implementing a Co-Responder Protocol at Cleveland State University

Award Information

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

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $367,858)

Cleveland State University (CSU) Police Department (CSU PD, lead applicant) and Counseling Center (CSUCC, partner applicant) plan to collaborate to create a Co-Responder position to accompany CSU PD when responding to students with behavioral health needs.  

We are seeking priority consideration for Priority 1(a) in regard to promoting racial equity and the removal of barriers to access and opportunity for communities that have been historically underserved. CSU’s student body and the local urban community are diverse in terms of race, gender identity, sexual orientation, and international status. See page 11 of our narrative for details.
The proposed initiative will complete the following goals: increase the percentage of mental health calls for service which are met with a trained behavioral health co-responder, increase training for law enforcement around the intersection of behavioral health and legal situations, increase case management follow-up for individuals involved in mental health calls for service, increase outreach to students to reduce mental health distress and increase help-seeking behaviors, and lastly, to build community partnerships and inform community of impact of grant activities for overall student and community safety.
The CSU Co-Responder will serve the CSU community and corresponding jurisdiction of the CSU PD including on campus, in CSU residential communities, and in residential and business areas near campus where CSU students frequent. The benefit for this initiative will be substantial. Our proposed program will directly benefit the CSU community including students, faculty, and staff, totaling over 16,000 people. The program will also benefit neighboring residential and business areas, residence life and residential students (over 1,000 people), the CSU PD and other partner law enforcement agencies who respond to on-campus needs. The greatest benefit we identify is for our students who have or will in the future need behavioral health support during crisis, which the Co-Responder would now be able to provide in real time.

The federal funding requested is $374,296 which will cover the cost of the Co-Responder’s salary, necessary technology, and training. The bulk of the cost of the program is to ensure we are able to hire a licensed mental health professional for the three years of the program.  
The leads for this initiative include Interim Counseling Center Director Dr. Brittany Sommers, Acting Chief Beverly Pettrey, and Interim Dean of Students Ali Martin Scoufield. Applicants are not previous grant recipients and there are no subcontractors.

Date Created: September 28, 2022