Transforming Police Responses to Mental Health Emergencies: Rapid Integrated Group Healthcare Team (RIGHT Care)
SUMMARY - The RIGHT Care Program is a data-driven approach to emergency mental health crisis response that is helping transform criminal justice and health systems in Dallas, across Texas, and nationally.
The Challenge of Identifying, Diverting & Treating Justice-Involved People with Mental Illness
SUMMARY - How to best manage the number of people with mental illnesses who are involved in the criminal justice system is long-standing problem that goes back decades. The Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute...
Dallas County Smart Justice Planning Project, Phase One
SUMMARY - The primary goal of this project—made possible by the Caruth Smart Justice Planning Grant—is to improve overall public safety by reducing the number of people with mental illness receiving treatment through involvement...
Across the nation and in Texas, the toll of mental illness is staggering. Nationally, about 20 percent of people in local jails are estimated to have a “recent history” of a mental health condition, almost three-quarters of whom also have substance use disorders. Once incarcerated, people with mental illnesses tend to stay in jail longer and upon release are at a higher risk of returning to incarceration than those without these illnesses.
Whether in Dallas County, at the state level in Texas, or in counties across the United States, there is near universal agreement that counties and states need to work in partnership to effectively reduce the number of people with mental illnesses in jail.
With support from the W.W. Caruth, Jr. Foundation at the Communities Foundation of Texas, in 2015, MMHPI launched a county-wide planning project to identify strategies to improve outcomes for people with mental illnesses within the Dallas County justice system.
The primary objective of the project was to improve public safety by developing a comprehensive multi-year plan to reduce and eventually eliminate the use of the Dallas County Jail for treating people who primarily have psychiatric needs, and who do not otherwise need to be incarcerated. The project had two phases: Phase One assembled facts to inform the plan. This document provides an overview of the methodology, findings and recommendations from Phase One.
In Phase Two, project partners, the CSG Justice Center, Dallas County, the Caruth Police Institute, Parkland Health & Hospital System (Parkland), and the Parkland Center for Clinical Innovation will work together with stakeholders from across the country to draft the plan.