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Mental Health Board Tells the Supes, “Care First, Jails Last!”

...When It Comes to the Mental Health Services in the Sacramento County Jails!

Ok, Mental Health Board…we see you…

During a special meeting of the Sacramento County Mental Health Board, on Tuesday November 8 - Election Night, six recommendations were unanimously approved “regarding behavioral health services provided to individuals detained in Sacramento County Jails.”

Are they about the services themselves provided inside those walls? Nah, not really.

They’re about the 2,147 peeps inside the jail with a mental health diagnosis who receive services while they experience incarceration.

That’s 63% of the Jails’ average daily population, which makes the Jails one of Sac County’s largest behavioral health services providers - a service it was not designed to provide…

*The slide below is pulled from the 11/8 MHB presentation, and breaks down the jail population percentages in regard to mental health status

In fact, being in jail can make someone’s mental health condition hella worse. Experiencing incarceration is linked to mood disorders like depression and bipolar disorder.

One of the Mental Health Board’s committees has spent the past year receiving presentations, reviewing reports and related documents, and completing on-site visits to mental health care providers/service centers in the community in order to prepare themselves for making these recommendations. It’s about time the County has had some peeps with a mental health focus take a deep dive into the connection between our County residents’ lack of access to mental health treatment and the bloated Jail population. We keep seeing architects and former police chiefs tell the Supes that the Sac County jail needs to be expanded…well, it sounds like the Mental Health Board is saying Hell to the Nah - take that money you’d spend on a new jail annex and plug it into the community so our people get treatment, not trauma.

*The slides below are pulled from the 11/8 MHB presentation, and break down the 6 approved recommendations

And the recs are coming at a really good time cuz the Board of Supervisors is gonna be voting on how to reduce the population in the Jails, as well as the possibility of building a “Correctional Health and Mental Health Facility”, on Wednesday, December 7th, 2022 at 2pm.

Make sure you tap in - tell them to cancel that plan and instead invest in the recommendations from the Mental Health Board, which actually lift up what those most impacted have been demanding for years now and which are also backed up by data.

We need CARE, not Cages. We need TREATMENT, not TRAUMA.

Let your voice be heard!

  • Call and/or email your County Supervisor and join us in demanding that the Board end this expansion project and commit to alternatives to incarceration that prioritize public health and community safety. Find Your County Supervisor Here

  • Sign on to oppose the Sacramento County Jail Expansion Plan with this petition from Decarcerate Sacramento.

Learn more about the upcoming jail expansion vote by watching the recording of SJPC's latest Chit-Chat episode! Linked here - graphic below!


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