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New NACo Report and Case Studies: Reducing Mental Illness in Rural Jails

July 18, 2016

Reducing mental illness in rural jailsDespite their small populations, rural counties face some of the same challenges as urban counties when it comes to their behavioral health and justice systems. Rural counties have residents with mental illnesses, they lack resources to provide quality services, and they face the same legal and policy barriers to implementing new programs and practices as their more populous urban counterparts. But in some ways, rural counties struggle even more: they lack access to community services, and have difficulty providing mental health services in jail and housing residents with mental illnesses.

As part of Stepping Up, the National Association of Counties (NACo) has published a new report that outlines some of the challenges rural counties face when trying to reduce incarceration of people with mental illnesses, and provides rural county leaders with ideas and strategies for addressing these challenges. The report is accompanied by a series of case studies highlighting rural counties that are making significant strides on this issue. 

To read the full report and accompanying case studies, click here.    

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