U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Gresham Behavioral Health Unit Behavioral Health Unit

Award Information

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

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $534,828)

Project Abstract:

The City of Gresham, in partnership with Cascadia Health (service provider) and Portland State University (evaluator), is applying for funds to expand the Gresham Police Department’s (GPD) Behavioral Health Unit (BHU) to create two additional co-responder teams. The BHU uses a co-responder model pairing GPD officers and Cascadia Health mental health clinicians to respond to 911 calls for service with a mental health nexus. GPD is seeking priority consideration under two program-specific priority areas: Promote effective strategies by law enforcement to identify and reduce the risk of harm to individuals with MHDs (Mental Health Disorder) or co-occurring MHSUDs who encounter law enforcement and improve public safety and Promote effective strategies for identification and treatment of female offenders with MHDs or co-occurring MHSUDs. This application will support the addition of two master’s-level mental health clinicians, who will pair with two GPD-funded officers. This will allow the BHU to reach more people in need while fostering greater community awareness, communication, and education regarding assisting persons with MHD or MHSUDs

This grant will fund two clinician positions, combined with one-time American Recovery Program Act (ARPA)  funding approved by Gresham City Council, expanding BHU to four two-person teams. The BHU will dedicate a greater portion of their time responding to emergency calls for services with a mental health nexus by extending coverage to shifts in both day and evening hours. This allows for an increase in immediate response of people experiencing a mental health crisis and will greatly enhance the services police officers can offer when responding to calls involving persons with MHD or MHSUDs.

The City of Gresham is requesting federal funding of $550,000 with a target goal to serve 400 individuals through direct contact and immediate support.

BHU will provide these services in the City of Gresham, the fourth largest city in Oregon with an estimated population of 113,103. Gresham’s gender makeup includes approximately 50% identifying as female. Its racial makeup is approximately 75% White, 4.3% African American, 0.9% Native American, 4.9% Asian, 1.2% Pacific Islander, 9.8% from other races, and 10.4% from two or more races. Hispanic and/or Latino identification within any race category is approximately 20.7% of the population.

The Gresham Police Department is a previous recipient of JMHCP grant funds under award numbers 2017-MO-BX-0011 and 2020-MO-BX-0031.

Date Created: September 26, 2023