Reducing Justice Involvement For People with Mental Illness.

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The Pennsylvania Mental Health and Justice Center of Excellence is a collaborative effort of Drexel University and the University of Pittsburgh. It is funded by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime & Delinquency and the Pennsylvania Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services. The purpose of the Center is to work with Pennsylvania communities to identify points of interception at which an intervention can be made to prevent individuals with mental illness from entering or penetrating deeper into the criminal justice system.

The Center will work collaboratively with the Commonwealth and locales in planning and implementing programs, providing information to promote their use of evidence-based practices and serve as a resource for technical assistance and training. The Center will also host a central repository for collected data and information on criminal justice/mental health responses throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Click here to view the official announcement of the PA Mental Health and Justice Center of Excellence.

News and Information
County and Program Information
Center of Excellence Blog
Resource Center

Upcoming Webinars

None listed at this time.

Mental Health and Criminal Justice in the News

Representative Tim Murphy Wins 2014 Torrey Advocacy Commendation (Treatment Advocacy Center)

  • Congressman Murphy has been chosen to receive the Treatment Advocacy Centerís highest honor in recognition of his efforts to decrease the criminalization for mental illness and make treatment possible for more people.

New Phoenix Team Tackles Recidivism of Those with Mental Illness (AZ Central)

  • Forensic ďassertive community treatmentĒ teams (FACT) work with seriously mentally ill clients with recurring run-ins with police to halt the revolving door of incarceration and hospitalization by focusing on the catalysts.

Sheriff Darr and City Sign Pact with Justice Department to Improve Mental Health at Jail (Ledger-Enquirer)

  • Columbus officials and Muscogee County Sheriff have signed a Memorandum of Agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice that calls for necessary reforms in the mental health care services at the county jail.

Over 100 Strong and Growing: Pennsylvaniaís problem-solving courts (PLS Reporter)

  • The Administrative Office of the Pennsylvania Courts (AOPC) marked a new milestone Friday, announcing the number of problem-solving courts in the state has passed the 100 mark.

The Data Gap (Governing)

  • Ted Smith, chief of civic innovation for the city of Louisville, Ky., is working on a project to help dual-diagnosed prisoners receive health care and substance abuse treatment. But one of the challenges heís facing is pulling together all the data needed to help this vulnerable group.

Want Heroin Treatment in N.J.? Get Arrested (

  • The fastest way for an adult to get a treatment bed for heroin addiction in New Jersey today Ė get arrested. Itís a growing reality in the Garden State, one thatís troubling for treatment providers and substance abusers alike.

Click here to find information by county including descriptive data (e.g. crime & mental health stats) and contact information for county agencies.

Click here to find program information by intercept.

Looking to have questions answered or to discuss issues with your peers in other counties? Our blog will give you the opportunity to initiate conversations with the Center of Excellence staff and your peers.

Click here to view our blog or start a conversation!

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