Cornyn, Klobuchar Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Reauthorization Act passes House

The legislation would support law enforcement response to individuals in crisis

WASHINGTON – US Senators John Cornyn (R-TX) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) made the following statements after their Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Reauthorization Actwhich supports suicide prevention efforts in prisons, mental health courts, crisis intervention teams and other programs that have helped law enforcement assist people with mental illness for nearly two decades , the House approved:

“The mental health and crisis intervention programs funded by these grants have eased the strain on law enforcement, reduced incarceration rates, and provided better access to care for people in crisis,” Senator Cornyn said. “I am grateful to my colleagues in the House for supporting this important program, and I urge my colleagues in the Senate to ensure that mental health courts and crisis intervention teams can continue their life-saving work.”

“As a former prosecutor, I have seen firsthand how public safety is enhanced by partnerships between law enforcement agencies and mental health providers,” said Senator Klobuchar. “This bipartisan legislation will help ensure we have the training and resources to address mental health issues at all stages of the justice system, from equipping law enforcement officers to effectively respond to mental health calls to facilitating smooth return in the society. Now that this bill has passed the House, I will continue to work with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to get it signed into law.”

This legislation must now go back to the Senate and be re-passed due to technical changes before going to the President’s desk.

Background:

The Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Reauthorization Act it would provide beneficiaries with more options to respond to and treat people experiencing a mental health crisis. The bill would be:

  • Support co-responder teams deploying mental health professionals with law enforcement agencies and enable 24/7/365 response capability;
  • Improve community capacity and linkage to care systems to ensure continuity of care and linkage to mental health and substance use disorder crisis services;
  • Enable jurisdictions to provide case management services and supports in conjunction with suicide prevention programs; And
  • Support community programs as they complement the new 988 mental health crisis hotline and allow crisis intervention teams to be placed in 911 call centers.

The Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Reauthorization Act is supported by Addiction Policy Forum, American Correctional Association, American Jail Association, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, American Probation and Parole Association, Association of Prosecuting Attorneys, Correctional Leaders Association, Fraternal Order of the Police (FOP), Major Cities Chiefs Association ( MCCA), Major County Sheriffs of America (MCSA), Mental Health America, Miami Center for Mental Health and Recovery, National Association for Behavioral Health, National Association of Counties (NACo), National Association of Drug Court Professionals, National Association of State Directors of the mental health program, National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), National Association of Police Organizations (NAPO), National Association of State Alcohol and Drug Abuse Directors (NASADAD), National Conference of State Legislatures, National Council for Mental Wellbeing, National Criminal Justice Association (NCJA), National District Attorneys Association (NDAA) , the National Fraternal Order of Police, the National Governors Association, the National League of Cities, the National Sheriffs’ Association (NSA), Prison Fellowship, the Council of State Governments Justice Center, and Treatment Alternatives for Safe Communities (TASC).

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