Bear River Mental Health updates Cache County on Justice Intervention Initiative

In his annual report to the Cache County Council Tuesday, Bear River Mental Health Executive Director Reed Ernstrom thanked the members for the construction made to his department each year.

Ernstrom said he is able to leverage that money to get both state and federal funds, although money is always needed. Ernstrom said the money pays for in-patient and out-patient care, crisis intervention and other services to include schools and case management for those incarcerated in the Cache County Jail.

Ernstrom talked about the Justice Intervention Initiative which was approved by the Utah Legislature and is now nearing the end of its first year. It was designed to treat non-violent offenders outside of jail.

“We do that by addressing the underlying factors,” Ernstrom explained. “For example, pro-criminal associations, pro-criminal attitudes and values, pro-criminal personality factors, as well as poor social, educational, leisure and work histories.”

He told council members this is not easy because a lot of offenders are not trying to get back in society. He acknowledged the initiative was launched in order to save money.

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