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PTACC Ticker
Wednesday, November 18th

Upcoming PTACC "Conversations with the Field"
Seminar I. Deflection: Connecting People in Communities of Color to Treatment and Services in the Best Possible Way
Wednesday, December 2nd from 1:00pm - 2:30pm ET
Register today.

Seminar II. Taking it to the streets: Treatment, Housing, and Recovery During COVID-19
Wednesday, December 9th from 1:00pm - 2:30pm ET
NADCP: Journal for Advancing Justice Volume III
Emerging Best Practices in Law Enforcement Deflection and Community Supervision Programs

The National Association of Drug Court Professionals (NADCP) published a special issue of the Journal for Advancing Justice, which addresses programs and interventions designed to assist individuals with mental health and substance use disorders who come to the attention of law enforcement and community corrections programs. It also analyzes community supervision practices in an effort to contribute to the research on effective strategies for probation, parole, and pretrial supervision programs. 

One section of this special issue is dedicated to law enforcement deflection programs- the introduction (page 11) written by PTACC's very own, Jac Charlier, Executive Director of PTACC and TASC's Center for Health and Justice. These articles reflect critical issues in the emerging field of law enforcement deflection and prearrest diversion programs. Defining deflection as a "collaborative intervention connecting public safety and public health systems to create community-based pathways to treatment for people who have substance use disorders, mental health disorders, or other service needs without their entry into the justice system." These deflection pathways facilitate connections to treatment, recovery, housing, and social services via case management. The articles in this special issue explore effective practices for police deflection, as well as lessons learned from established programs. Access a pdf of the Journal.

Building deflection partnerships, expanding community involvement
South Side (Chicago) churches can get free MH training from this local group

The Chicago chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is looking to help faith-based communities on the South and West sides that are grappling with the coronavirus. The mental health advocacy group, which recently received a $500,000 from the Illinois Department of Human Services to assist in their efforts, will use the funding for mental health education and training in targeted zip codes to help underserved communities.

“We have a lot of space and opportunity to build partnerships all over the city — including the South Side — and we’ve reached out to over 250 churches in the Chicagoland area to engage in this training. It’s a really great opportunity for faith-based organizations.” -Jen McGowan-Tomke, chief operating officer of NAMI’s Chicago chapter.

With coronavirus cases surging again in the city and Black and Latino communities bearing the brunt of the virus, mental health services are vital, McGowan-Tomke said. Through the organization’s FaithNet network, faith leaders learn how to navigate conversations about mental illness with their congregants and exchange information, tools, and outreach materials with other clergy members. Block Club Chicago

How can these efforts translate to deflection partnerships? Read about Huntington (WV) QRT's collaboration. 

Article: Pandemic could be contributing to spike in U.S. overdose deaths 
National data is incomplete, but suggests U.S. OD deaths are on track to reach an all-time high
National data is incomplete, but available information suggests U.S. drug overdose deaths are on track to reach an all-time high. Addiction experts blame the pandemic, which has left people stressed and isolated, disrupted treatment and recovery programs, and contributed to an increasingly dangerous illicit drug supply.
Before the coronavirus even arrived, the United States was in the midst of the deadliest drug overdose epidemic in its history, with a record 71,000 overdose deaths last year. This year’s tally will probably surpass that, according to preliminary death data from nine states reviewed by the Associated Press and national data on emergency responses to reported drug overdoses. Washington Post

TASC's President Announces Retirement
A nationwide search for her successor has begun

Pam Rodriguez, president and CEO of Chicago based Treatment Alternatives for Safe Communities (TASC), announced Tuesday that she will retire in 2021. Rodriguez, who has led TASC since 2009, built a legacy of excellence at an agency that has earned national acclaim for justice advocacy and specialized case management services. A nationwide search for her successor has begun. Read more.

Upcoming Conference: West Coast Symposium on Addictive Disorders
Complimentary access to the PTACC community!
Virtual Conference: December 3rd-4th, 2020
C4 Recovery Foundation’s 11th annual WCSAD will explore the diverse issues that are currently impacting the core goal of behavioral healthcare. This conference will provide healthcare professionals with the most current insights and actionable ideas from industry leaders to help them achieve that goal.

C4 has decided to make registration to the upcoming virtual West Coast Symposium free 
for the PTACC Community! Email with questions. 

Instructions for complimentary registration:
1. Access the webpage at
2. Go through the registration process and when you get to the payment page enter FOR
 in the code box.    

Did you see it?

The City of Brockton’s “Champion Plan”
The City of Brockton (MA) initiated The Champion Plan (TCP) in February 2016 as part of a community-wide effort to redefine the public safety sector’s approach to policing the drug crisis. TCP program model allows those suffering from addiction to walk into a police station and ask for treatment. Findings from this study indicate police-centered treatment-on-demand programs may be viable strategies for getting those suffering
from the disease of addiction into treatment. Authored by Sean P. Varano, Pamela Kelley, and Nicholas Makhlouta. Access the full article.

Tucson: In the Local Fight Against Opioid Addiction, U-MATTER
The Tucson, Arizona police department has developed a robust and successful deflection program, Unified Medication Assisted Treatment Targeted Engagement Response (U-Matter), under the leadership and passion of Assistant Chief Kevin Hall. Tucson Police Officers in the U-MATTER unit perform outreach to individuals in the community alongside peer-support co-responders from partner agency, CODAC. Watch a video on U-MATTER outreach and read the “Tucson Police Department Deflection Program: 6 Month Evaluation Findings May 2019 report” and more about U-MATTER.

National Academy of Medicine: Diversion a “promising practice” 
The article notes that some promising approaches “focus on re-directing people with an SUD away from the justice system...reducing the number of people incarcerated for drug-related offenses and connecting them instead to treatment.” Diversion saves lives, and results in significant cost savings. Read more. 
Want to get involved in the growing field of deflection and pre-arrest diversion?
Then join a PTACC Strategy Area

Check It Out! The PTACC National Pre-Arrest Diversion Resource Website.

PTACC is the NATIONAL voice of the pre-arrest diversion field and provides vision, leadership, advocacy, and education to facilitate the growth and practice of deflection and pre-arrest diversion across the United States.
© 2020 Police, Treatment and Community Collaborative (PTACC)

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The PTACC Ticker is a summary of resources, news stories, opportunities, and updates for deflection related issues, including the topics of police and other first responders, treatment, and community. It is compiled and published by PTACC each Wednesday.

Some headlines and text have been altered by PTACC for clarity or emphasis, or to minimize discriminatory or stigmatizing language. Opinions in the articles and op-eds do not necessarily express the views of PTACC and our partners.