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The Hayward Evaluation and Response Teams (HEART) Program

Award Information

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

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $709,000)

Abstract: The City of Hayward, California community urgently needs the Hayward Evaluation and Response Teams (HEART) Program. This trauma-informed, service-appropriate co-responder initiative aims to improve public safety and address the growing demand for mental health and substance use crisis response. The HEART Project will divert individuals with mental health and substance use disorders from the justice system, reduce police interventions in mental health-related calls, and improve access to wraparound services. Through a collaborative approach with community partners, the program will deploy two mobile response teams: the Mobile Integrated Health Unit (MIHU) and the Mobile Evaluation Team (MET), consisting of mental health professionals paired with a trained police officer or paramedic. In two years, Hayward Police Department (HPD) logged 4,007 responses to people with mental health needs. HPD responded to 42% more direct 5150 calls in 2020 over 2019. The HEART project represents a vital step forward in addressing these pressing needs and improving access to mental health resources and support for all residents of Hayward. The program aims to serve at least 750 individuals in one year of implementation, providing appropriate response and trauma-informed services to residents experiencing mental health crises while allowing Hayward officers to focus on more serious crimes. The requested funding is $709,000.

Date Created: August 10, 2023