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Mental Health Court Receives Grant Funds

The Portage County Specialized Docket for mental health received over $70,000 in grant funding from Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services through the Mental Health & Recovery Board of Portage County.

The funds cover behavioral health treatment and recovery support services to clients that are involved in certified Mental Health Dockets with the Supreme Court of Ohio. Time-limited recovery supports may be utilized to help eliminate barriers to treatment and are specific to the participant’s needs.

In Portage County, the STAR (Successful Treatment and Recovery) Court operates in the Municipal Court with Honorable Kevin Poland presiding. STAR Court is a collaborative effort among local agencies, treatment providers, court personnel, and the adult probation department.

Last year 29 clients were served through STAR Court.

“It’s been a rewarding to witness people develop the tools they need to become healthy and law-abiding members of the community, “said Judge Kevin Poland.

Mental illness must be a contributing factor to the individual being charged in order for them to be considered for the specialized docket and have no history of serious or repetitive violence. Participants are expected to obtain employment, have stable housing, pay court costs, and complete their mental health treatment goals prior to release. At the end of the program, the successful “graduate” should have learned the skills necessary to remain a healthy, law-abiding member of the community.

“The addition of the mental health court in Portage County has been beneficial for the clients and public alike, as it enables people to get the help they need while keeping them out of expensive jail beds and reducing recidivism,” commented John Garrity, PhD, executive director of the Mental Health & Recovery Board of Portage County.

The funds will help support recovery needs for the individual’s recovery, such as housing, transportation, identification, employment, peer support activities, support groups, emergency basic need items, treatment services.


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