Transition planning can improve health and safety outcomes for individuals with behavioral health conditions who are leaving jails and prisons and moving back into the community. Research has shown that the overrepresentation of people with mental and substance use disorders in jails and prisons consistently produces poor outcomes for both the affected people and for correctional agencies. To help community leaders improve these outcomes, SAMHSA has released a new publication, Guidelines for Successful Transition of People with Mental or Substance Use Disorders from Jail and Prison: Implementation Guide.This guide provides 10 guidelines for behavioral health, justice, and community leaders.
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The boot heel of Missouri has some of the worst health outcomes and poverty in the nation. To address these problems, which are so often connected, SAMHSA and our community partners are taking steps to bring Open Table to this underserved rural area.
Open Table—From Poverty to Community—is a model that trains congregations and their members to form communities called Tables. The Tables transform their vocational and life experiences into tools their “Brothers and Sisters” in poverty can use to develop and implement plans to change their lives.
From SAMHSA's Office of Policy, Planning, and Innovation
An introduction by Jennie Simpson, Ph.D., Office of Policy, Planning, and Innovation, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
While speaking in Milwaukee last year, I met a woman named Maria. Her 31-year-old son, Dontre, had recently been killed in an interaction with law enforcement in a city park—a place he went to get away from the frightening voices he heard in his head. On the day he died, the police had been called to check on Dontre’s well-being after he was seen sleeping in the park. What could have been an opportunity for crisis intervention resulted in a loss of life.
Dontre’s death is a tragedy. What makes it even more tragic is the fact that, far too often, these types of interactions end similarly. On many occasions, responders who encounter a person experiencing a mental health crisis aren’t equipped with the training and skills to respond to appropriately.