Behavioral Health Justice Intervention Services (BHJIS)
BHJIS provides funding to help local communities address critical intervention points through which individuals with mental and substance use disorders can be diverted from criminal justice involvement.
Funding to support BHJIS was awarded to the California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) through the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA). DHCS has contracted with Advocates for Human Potential, Inc. (AHP), as the Administrative Entity to assist DHCS in overseeing and implementing the BHJIS Project.
If you are experiencing a behavioral health crisis, please call 911.
BHJIS Awards Announcement
DHCS is pleased to announce the recipients of awards for the BHJIS funding opportunity. This DHCS initiative is a vital step in improving California’s behavioral health systems and services by improving first responder, law enforcement, and other community efforts to address behavioral health crises.
The BHJIS Request for Applications (RFA) resulted in 34 awards totaling more than $14 million in funding for programs to improve the collaborative response to individuals facing mental health or substance use crises and to reduce justice system involvement. Awardees include 6 county behavioral health agencies, 3 city governments, 3 colleges/universities, 7 law enforcement agencies, 1 fire department, 1 county probation agency, 1 state agency, 1 hospital, and 11 nonprofit community-based organizations.
Grantees are listed below.
County Behavioral Health Agencies
County of Santa Barbara Department of Behavioral Wellness | Santa Barbara County | $700,000
Santa Barbara County’s three-pronged approach is: 1) supporting the implementation of a co-response program with the Santa Maria Police Department; 2) creating a sustainable Crisis Intervention Team training program including a Naloxone component; and 3) identifying a process for collecting and using data for cross-agency care coordination and program assessment.
Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services - Behavioral Health | Humboldt County | $426,249
The program embeds behavioral health staff into Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office patrol operations to co-respond to mental health calls. This proactive program emphasizes treatment in the least restrictive manner. The program design also includes a wide range of appropriate services, both for immediate crises and follow up.
Merced County Behavioral Health and Recovery Services | Merced County | $700,000
This project supports on-call availability for after-hours and weekends of a team including at least an officer and behavioral health specialist to be deployed to 911 calls to offer mental health assistance, triage, screening, crisis intervention, referrals, and follow up with aftercare within the community.
Riverside University Health System - Behavioral Health | Riverside County | $700,000
College Campus Behavioral Health Crisis Response is a partnership with college campuses to respond, in collaboration with campus law enforcement and other emergency response personnel, to behavioral health crises; to alleviate acute crisis; and divert students from needing emergency psychiatric care or justice interventions.
Sacramento County Forensic Behavioral Health | Sacramento County | $649,732
Project Warm Handoff is a partnership among Behavioral Health Forensics, the Sheriff’s Department, Probation, Superior Court, and the District Attorney. It offers individuals identified as having behavioral health needs with immediate transportation from jails to a community-based treatment facility upon release and reentry services provided by peers and clinical staff.
San Joaquin County Behavioral Health Services | San Joaquin County | $213,792
BHS and the Stockton Police Department are designing a role-clarity resource tool on responding to individuals experiencing a behavioral health crisis and integrating this resource into citywide crisis intervention trainings. The project also includes providing officer wellness training and developing recommendations addressing gaps in the first-responder.
County Probation Agency
El Dorado County Probation Department | El Dorado County | $172,960
The capacity building project supports data collection and sharing mechanisms across partner agencies, facilitating a warm hand-off to behavioral health services and increasing referrals into the pre-trial diversion program. Intended products are (1) a process and technology plan enabling the county to procure a software developer and (2) aligned workflow processes and department practices for data collection, sharing, and reporting. The goal is to increase connections to treatment, thereby reducing justice system involvement for individuals with substance use disorders (SUD) and serious mental illness (SMI).
San Bernardino County on behalf of Arrowhead Regional Medical Center | San Bernardino County | $180,000
The aims of the San Bernardino County Justice Intervention Work Group Project are to identify and build operational plans to improve coordinated care for individuals prior to discharge from the detention centers and state hospitals, to align services under Cal AIM, and to enhance care management.
City of Half Moon Bay | San Mateo County | $180,000
The CARES Program is a collaboration among the City of Half Moon Bay, Sheriff’s Department, and the Public Safety Communication Center. This community-based response targets low-risk 911 crisis calls, redirecting them for a compassionate and dignified response by the CARES team, rather than emergency personnel and law enforcement.
City of Hayward | Alameda County | $389,260
The purpose of the Hayward Evaluation and Response Teams program is to build capacity for and implement a high-quality trauma-informed, service-appropriate co-responder program that reduces violence and diverts individuals from justice-involvement.
City of Watsonville | Santa Cruz County | $481,327
This project’s goal is to improve the City of Watsonville’s community safety and wellness through a multidisciplinary, trauma-informed, holistic, public health-centered, prevention/treatment-focused, socially and racially equitable, co-response system. The vision is for substance use/mental health crisis response to be coordinated, comprehensive, and culturally responsive, rather than producing additional trauma or entry into the criminal justice system.
Law Enforcement Agencies
Alhambra Police Department | Los Angeles County | $245,659
The Alhambra Homeless Outreach Mental Evaluation Team (HOME Team) is adding additional staff to directly connect individuals experiencing mental health crises with services, offer behavioral health training for first responders, and engage community stakeholders to divert 9-1-1 calls to HOME Team’s co-response program.
Downey Police Department | Los Angeles County | $409,656
The Downey Police Department is partnering with the Los Angeles Department of Mental Health to better serve and offer diversion programs to those affected by serious mental illness, substance use disorder, and homelessness.
Fort Bragg Police Department | Mendocino County | $222,348
Fort Bragg Police Department is collaborating with the mental health community to design and implement an integrated mental health response process. The intention is to prevent justice system involvement by engaging people in need in the most appropriate mental health services.
Mendocino County Sheriff's Office | Mendocino County | $91,605
The project’s goal is to strengthen collaboration among the Sheriff’s Office and community stakeholders, including analyzing data, and making recommendations for re-entry programs to reduce recidivism, especially for populations with behavioral health challenges. The coalition includes law enforcement; Tribal governments; nonprofit agencies serving justice-impacted individuals; health care; higher education; behavioral health; probation/parole; and the Workforce Alliance.
Riverside Sheriff's Department | Riverside County | $670,152
The purpose of the program is to include clinical therapists in the response to 911 calls, using two-person teams to focus on risk assessment, proper diagnosis, and providing resources, services, and support.
Vallejo Police Department | Solano County | $286,957
This project unites Vallejo Police Department and its partners in a large-scale community needs assessment to track progress and identify gaps in current mental health and substance use crisis response. The results inform a co-response service model to ensure Vallejo has access to trauma-informed care for mental health- or substance use-related crises.
Woodland Police Department | Yolo County | $60,000
The Woodland Police Department and the Yolo County Health and Human Services Agency are expanding the existing successful Co-Responder Clinician Program to promote effective strategies to identify and reduce the risk of harm to individuals with mental illness or co-occurring mental illness/substance abuse and to increase public safety.
San Ramon Valley Fire Protection District | Contra Costa County | $390,000
San Ramon Valley Fire’s behavioral health co-responder solution includes formation of a stakeholder workgroup, enhanced community engagement, creation of a project dashboard, a design process using implementation science best practices, provider training, and an implementation plan that ensures benefits for all stakeholders.
Chaffey Community College District | San Bernardino County | $310,970
The Chaffey College Police Department, in collaboration with mental health partners, is implementing a school threat assessment crisis response, called the Higher Education Assessment Team, based on a successful model in use throughout the Los Angeles Community College District.
California State University Long Beach Research Foundation | Los Angeles County | $432,965
As a team of case managers and police officers, Campus Assessment and Stabilization Team is designed to assess and stabilize crisis situations through a humanistic, trauma-informed approach, reducing the need for hospitalizations and use of force while connecting individuals to support services to sustain their wellbeing.
University of California Santa Cruz | Santa Cruz County | $292,500
The University of California Santa Cruz’s planned improvements to its mental health crisis response program, in collaboration with Campus Police, include strategies for a non-law enforcement team that can safely transport students to the local behavioral health unit when necessary.
Nonprofit Community Based Organizations
Access Support Network | Monterey County | $541,201
The purpose of the Monterey Community Response Team is to respond to substance use disorder and other mental health crises with compassion and practical solutions, by mobilizing community and peer resources alongside law enforcement. It is intended to improve health outcomes and promote social justice by diverting people in need toward healthcare and supportive services rather than incarceration.
Alliance for Community Wellness | Alameda | $516,001
The Alliance for Community Wellness is using the grant to develop a multidisciplinary Mobile Assessment and Transportation Unit. By co-responding with officers in the community, the team seeks to divert people with mental illness and SUD who are arrested for misdemeanors away from the criminal justice system to a navigation center for respite and supportive services.
Chinatown Service Center | Los Angeles County| $156,630
The Chinatown Service Center (CSC) project design is to provide telehealth iPads to the Monterey Park Police Department and within two school districts. The tablets connect directly to CSC clinicians trained in de-escalation, to assist with mental health crises. The purpose is to prevent or reduce risk of justice involvement for youth and adults.
Lags Recovery Centers, Inc. | Santa Barbara County| $565,300
LAGS Recovery Centers, Inc. has designed a mobile mental wellness team to work, alongside local agencies, on the streets of Santa Maria and Lompoc to do wellness checks on people experiencing homelessness, including those recently discharged from the ER or hospital, elderly, and youth. The objectives are to reduce the number of crises and increase wellness check-ups.
Mental Health Association of San Francisco (MHASF) | San Francisco County | $530,000
The Peer Supported Release & Community Reentry project is a partnership among MHASF, the district attorney, public defender, and San Francisco Jail Health Services. The goals are to provide peer support to individuals formerly incarcerated in the San Francisco jail, mitigate and reduce recidivism among individuals with mental health and co-occurring substance use challenges, integrate participants into the community, and improve their long-term health outcomes.
ONTRACK Program Resources | Sacramento County | $380,908
The goals of the ONTRACK Program Resources’ Community Health and Justice Project are to transform the way Sacramento’s criminal justice, behavioral health and Black community stakeholders work together; reduce Black disproportionality in the criminal justice system through a collective impact process; provide capacity building technical assistance and training; and employ a data-driven approach.
Partners4Wellness | Orange County | $206,700
Orange County Youth Mental Health First Aid project is designed to train 30-50 school resource officers to become mental health advocates and provide a warm handoff of students to professional mental health coaches, counselors, and therapists. The project also supports professional social emotional support sessions from licensed clinical social workers for 200 students.
Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth | Alameda County | $688,000
The purpose of the Safe Outside the System program is to establish a coordinated continuum of care among restorative justice organizations, mental health non-profits, law enforcement, and City of Oakland Department of Violence Prevention to reach individuals in early mental health crisis before they enter the criminal justice system.
Sonoma County Office of Education | Sonoma County | $395,165
The goal of Healthy Sonoma is to strengthen connection and referral processes among grade 7-12 school personnel, law enforcement, County agencies, and community organizations providing behavioral health/substance use services, including cross-agency professional development. The intention of law enforcement partnerships is to reduce incarceration and support school re-entry, using training to increase culturally appropriate responses to student behaviors.
Uplift Family Services | Santa Clara County | $700,000
The goals of Uplift Family Services, Santa Clara are 1) enhance current county-wide crisis services by building capacity among system partners, particularly law enforcement, first responders, and other community partners; and 2) increase community awareness of mental health and substance use issues to avoid over-utilization of law enforcement and 911.
Uplift Family Services | Solano County | $700,000
The goals of Uplift Family Services, Solano are 1) enhance current county-wide crisis services by building capacity among system partners, particularly law enforcement, first responders, and other community partners; and 2) increase community awareness of mental health and substance use issues to avoid over-utilization of law enforcement and 911.
California Department of Corrections- Division of Adult Parole Operations | Statewide | $466,500
The Behavioral Health Reintegration (BHR) Unit provides specialized clinical case management services to roughly 13,000 high risk/high need parolees with mental health and substance use issues statewide. The grant expands BHR’s capacity to provide more accessible and meaningful client care by augmenting office-based services with field-based ones, including co-responding with parole agents.
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