Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $376,366)
Fresh Start Program- Proposal Abstract
Applicant name: City of Las Vegas population 641,903 (U.S. Census 2020)
Funding is requested for the Las Vegas Municipal Courts’ Fresh Start Program
Service delivery site is Las Vegas Municipal Court, 100 E. Clark Ave., Las Vegas, NV 89101. Court Administrator is Mr. Jack Eslinger ([email protected])
702-229-4673. Project Director is Ms. Margoth Tello
([email protected]) 702-229-4792.
Total Federal Amount Requested over 4 year project period: $ 376,368
Category of funding requested: Enhancement
Total number of individuals to be served over the life of the grant = 280 (70/yr)
The target population for this grant is nonviolent misdemeanor offenders, who are unhoused.
No priority consideration is being sought.
The Fresh Start program’s goals are to:
reduce homelessness in the City of Las Vegas and Clark County;
decrease the law enforcement resources utilized to cite, arrest and process offenses related to homelessness;
break the cycle of citation, arrest and jail time, by addressing the underlying issues of participants experiencing homelessness.
Objective 1: Approximately 70 participants will be assessed and admitted to the Fresh Start program by the end of FY 2023 and annually thereafter.
Objective 2: Approximately 30 participants will complete the Fresh Start program by the end of FY 2023, and annually thereafter, by demonstrating stable, sustainable housing and income.
Objective 3: Continuous data collection will result in an analytical report, to be distributed to partners and stakeholders by the end of FY 2024, and updated annually thereafter.
Of the 19,000 individuals with cases before the Court in 2021, approximately 10% were determined to be homeless. In its first year of operation, 265 individuals were referred to the Fresh Start Court Program, based on their charges. Homelessness is the only absolute requirement for participating in the Fresh Start Community Court program. Of Fresh Start Court participants, 95% are also unemployed at the time to of their arrest. 90% have a mental health diagnosis, and 80% are diagnosed with a substance use disorder, which indicates that the majority have co-occurring disorders.
Even the simplest misdemeanor offenses can burden the homeless with fines and criminal records that will make it harder for them to find jobs, save up for rental payments and receive government assistance. To stop this cycle, Fresh Start addresses the issues that contribute to homelessness, such as unemployment and a lack of access to mental illness and substance abuse treatment. The Fresh Start Program will connect participants to community partners and providers to help coordinate stable housing and provide treatment services as needed.
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