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Competency restoration alternatives
When a court determines that a defendant is not competent to stand trial, it often directs the defendant to inpatient treatment at the state hospital until competency is restored and they can return to the court. This is not always an efficient use of resources, and the process may take… Read More
Jail-based competency restoration
When a court determines that a defendant is not competent to stand trial, it often directs the defendant to inpatient treatment at the state hospital until competency is restored and they can return to the court. This is not always an efficient use of resources, and the process may take… Read More
Train jail personnel
Jail personnel are trained to recognize and appropriately respond to people with mental illnesses. Read More
Specialized defense counsel
Once appointed, the defense counsel is made aware of a defendant’s identified mental health needs. In some jurisdictions, defendants with such needs are also connected to social workers or case managers embedded in the defense office. Read More
Specialized pretrial release
People with mental illness are identified, as appropriate, for pretrial release using a validated pretrial risk assessment. A specialized team of pretrial staff receive additional training in working with people with mental illnesses, and in some jurisdictions, these personnel support defendants’ connection to treatment in the community while released. Read More
Train judges and court professionals
Judges and court staff–including public defenders, prosecutors, and pretrial services personnel–are trained to recognize and respond to people with mental illnesses in the criminal justice system. Read More
Pretrial diversion
At the pre-adjudication stage, people are identified as having a mental illness or co-occurring substance addiction and are referred to a pretrial diversion program. People referred to the program follow an alternative criminal justice case process and are connected with appropriate services and treatment. Read More
Pretrial risk assessment
A validated pretrial risk assessment is administered prior to every person’s first appearance in court/arraignment to inform pretrial release, eligibility for pretrial diversion, and conditions of pretrial supervision. Read More
Screening and assessment process for mental illness
Every person booked into jail is screened for mental illnesses using validated screening tools. For those that screen positive for serious mental illness, a licensed mental health professional administers a validated clinical assessment in a timely manner. Crucial case information is then disseminated to appropriate decision makers to inform pretrial… Read More