Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2007, $50,000)
The Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program (JMHCP), seeks to increase public safety through innovative cross-system collaboration for individuals with mental illness who come into contact with the criminal or juvenile justice systems. This program is funded through the Mentally Ill Offender Treatment and Crime Reduction Act of 2004 (MIOTCRA) (Public Law 108-414). The program is designed to increase public safety by facilitating collaboration among the criminal justice, juvenile justice, and mental health and substance abuse treatment systems to increase access to services for offenders with mental illness. Activities under this initiative encourage early intervention for 'system-involved' individuals with mental illness; provides new and existing mental health courts with various treatment options; maximizes diversion opportunities for nonviolent offenders with mental illness and co-occurring disorders; promotes training for justice and treatment professionals on criminal justice processes and mental health and substance abuse issues; and facilitates communication, collaboration, and the delivery of support services among justice professionals, treatment and related service providers, and governmental partners.
The County of Erie will use their 2007 JMHCP Planning Grant to write a strategic plan that will improve public safety by providing better services to offenders with mental health and substance abuse problems, through the establishment of Specialized Docket Courts. The project will be a collaboration between Erie County, which has experience with a Drug Court, and Ottawa County which has expressed interest in a Mental Health Court. The advantage of a Specialized Docket Court would be its ability to handle dual-diagnosed offenders with a degree of flexibility not available with either a Mental Health or a Drug Court alone. The planning process, facilitated by the Project Director under the supervision of an advisory council, will include a Needs and Resource Assessment, Program Construction based on the Sequential Intercept Model, a structure for continuing policy development, an MIS Compatibility Plan, and a Sustainability Plan. The main collaborative structure will be the Advisory Council, which will consist of representatives of the criminal justice system, the mental health system, and consumers and advocates.