Community stakeholders work together to explore barriers to diversion of persons from the criminal justice system when treatment of mental health and addiction is the more appropriate option. This is done through several system mapping projects using a Sequential Intercept Model, which helps to identify strategic points of intercept from the criminal justice system into treatment. Programs that have emerged as a result of these efforts include the following:
Stepping Up Initiative
The Stepping Up Initiative is a collaboration of community supports, judges, police officers, and mental health professionals who develop an action plan that can be used to achieve measurable impact on the criminal justice system. The human toll and cost to taxpayers is two to three times higher for people with mental illness in the jail system. Stepping Up's goal is to ensure that people with mental illness receive treatment and the prevalence of mental illness is reduced in the jail population.
Crisis Intervention Team Training for Law Enforcement
Summit County was the first community in Ohio to implement Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) training for safety forces. CIT training is a forty-hour training for law enforcement personnel where participants learn how to recognize and effectively respond to someone experiencing a mental health crisis. The class teaches effective techniques for de-escalating crises with the goal of helping to safely direct persons with mental illness into treatment instead of inappropriate incarceration.
The ADM system of care has individuals assigned to municipal and common pleas courts to review court dockets and identify individuals who may benefit from treatment rather than further penetration into the criminal justice system. These individuals are recommended to court personnel for consideration to participate in a specialized docket.
Specialized Dockets for Adults
The ADM System of Care supports specialized dockets that address addictions and mental illnesses in Summit County. These include the first mental health court in Ohio at the Akron Municipal Court, as well as mental health courts in Stow and Barberton Municipal Courts. Further, Summit County has the first Municipal Drug Court Docket in Ohio, as well as a Drug Court at the Common Pleas court. Barberton Municipal Court has also developed and received preliminary certification for their Drug Court. Aside from those that are funded in whole or in part by the ADM System of Care, we also have many other specialized dockets that receive support from ADM agencies.
Specialized Programs Serving Youth
Another long standing partnership with the juvenile justice system is the Summit County Juvenile Court Crossroads Program. This program, certified as a specialized docket court in 2015, is an intensive probation program that works to coordinate mental health, addictions treatment, and other community services for court involved youth. The court helps youth and their families to access necessary services to improve in their relationships and achieve positive personal growth.
Jail & Juvenile Corrections
The ADM system of care provides behavioral health treatment at the Summit County Jail and the Juvenile Detention Center. Services include psychiatric medications, counseling, psychiatry, case managements and nursing to address behavioral health needs of individuals while incarcerated, and to insure a transition from incarceration to needed community supports.