CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - The all new Cuyahoga County Diversion Center opened Tuesday on Cleveland’s East Side, clearing the way for the county to keep low-level offenders out of jail while focusing on their mental health.
Several local civic and religious leaders celebrated the facility’s opening at 1804 East 55th Street.
In a news release, the county called it a “transformative” facility.
“The Cuyahoga County Diversion Center provides an alternative to incarceration for people living with mental illness and/or substance misuse who have an interaction with law enforcement following a low-level, non-violent offense,” the release said. “This option provides treatment instead of jail and is a resource for law enforcement officers and the individuals they serve.”
The Diversion Center offers:
• Beds for 50 individuals, staffed 24/7 by clinical and behavioral health professionals
• Withdrawal management services (detox)
• Mental health and substance use assessments
• Psychiatric evaluation and medication management
• Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT)
• Individual and group counseling
• Peer support services
• Case management
• Help enrolling in benefit programs such as Social Security Disability and Medicaid
• Coordination and linking to community services after onsite care
“This is an exciting day for Cuyahoga County,” said County Executive Armond Budish. “The Diversion Center has been a top priority of my administration because it will transform the justice system in Cuyahoga County and enhance the well-being of those in our community. Half of our jail population suffers from mental illness or co- occurring mental health and substance use disorders, and often they should not be locked up.”
The first patient at the facility was admitted on Monday.