Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $203,319)
The Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office provides law enforcement services to the mostly rural communities of Cumberland County Maine. The overall population of Cumberland County is over 303,000 people, and in the towns, without police departments, the population is approximately 53,505. The demographic makeup is approximately 92% white, 3.2 % African American, 2.4% Asian, and 2% Hispanic. In the past three years, the number of calls for service for mental health-related services has risen dramatically from 220 calls in 2019 to 648 calls in 2021. A significant number of these calls are for repeat subjects thus putting a significant strain on the resources of the agency to answer the routine calls for service. The Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office believes that an embedded mental health professional provider would decrease the potential for harm to persons with mental health disorders (MHD) by directing the individuals to local service providers and providing follow-up services for healthier individuals and the community. The target population will be people with MHD and their families. The agency has been in talks with a local mental health services provider, Spurwink Services, Portland, ME who contracts with other local law enforcement agencies to provide a mental health care professional to assist law enforcement in those communities. The Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office is requesting $203,319.40 in federal funding. The Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office has not requested funding for a similar project in the past.