Sacramento, CA–The nation is experiencing a mental health crisis.
On Monday, California announced $518.5 million in grants to help provide services and housing options to those with severe mental illness or substance abuse problems, including those who are living on the streets.
The latest funding will help Governor Newsom’s CARE Court proposal, taking a new approach to homelessness and taking stronger action to get people off the streets and into a place where they can get the care they need.
The funding will provide treatment beds for more than 1,000 people at a time, plus behavioral health services for many more. It is part of a $2.2 billion effort to expand mental health housing and services across California, especially for people experiencing homelessness.
Newsom announced the latest grants during a meeting with families who have loved ones dealing with serious mental illness, many of whom have been homeless.
“The crisis on our streets is at a breaking point. Too many Californians are struggling with mental illness and substance abuse, and many of them end up on our streets. We need to change the way we deliver help to those who need it, and these grants are an important step in changing our approach to homelessness and serious mental illness,” Governor Newsom said. “California won’t look away any longer; we’re helping our fellow Californians now. That’s the California Way.”
The governor’s meeting in Sacramento with members of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) included families who are caring for loved ones struggling with behavioral or mental health disorders and could be helped by CARE Court. The governor heard their stories and talked about the historic actions that California is taking to address this crisis.
CARE Court will provide Californians suffering from untreated schizophrenia spectrum and other psychotic disorders with community-based treatment, services, and housing, and is intended to serve as an upstream intervention for the most severely impaired Californians.
“Governor Newsom has NAMI’s full support in getting CARE Court across the finish line,” said Jessica Cruz, NAMI CA CEO. “We’re here today to show our commitment to providing help, hope, and health for those affected by serious mental illness by supporting initiatives like CARE Court which will provide much-needed help to Californians who need it most.”
“CARE Court has the potential to change the lives of thousands of families across the state,” said Harold Turner, Executive Director of NAMI Urban Los Angeles. “Organizations like NAMI urgently need this support so we can quickly begin helping our loved ones who are struggling with untreated mental and behavioral issues.”
The awards announced are delivered through the Department of Health Care Services Behavioral Health Continuum Infrastructure Program Round 3: Launch Ready grants. In all, $2.2 billion was provided by the Legislature and the Governor to construct, acquire, and expand behavioral health facilities and community-based care options while investing in mobile crisis infrastructure.