County Executive Cheryl Dinolfo and Sheriff Todd Baxter recently announced the county will accept a state grant through the Monroe County Office of Mental Health to launch a substance abuse treatment program at the Monroe County Jail.
Under the program, services will be available to non-sentenced individuals ages 18 years or older struggling with substance use disorders and held in jail with pending charges. This will be the first state-funded pre-sentence treatment program at a local jail statewide.
“I’m grateful to New York state for providing this funding to help our Office of Mental Health and the sheriff’s office partner together to launch a first-of-its-kind pre-sentence treatment program at the county jail,” Dinolfo said. “Research shows a clear connection between untreated substance abuse and continued criminal activity, so it is especially important as we battle the ongoing opioid crisis that we also find ways to address the root issues of addiction.”
The Monroe County Sheriff’s Office will create two part-time positions to ensure proper execution and oversight of the program: housing specialist and family reintegration specialist.
“These funds will enhance the ability to serve drug-addicted inmates housed in the Monroe County Jail and increase our options in helping inmates transitioning back into the community,” Baxter said. “The housing specialist will aid in case management for inmates enrolled in drug and alcohol programs. The family reintegration specialist will focus on building bridges between the inmates and their families, as well as helping to coordinate jail transitional services critical to providing incarcerated individuals with the contacts and skills necessary to succeed once released back into society. These critical support systems help to reduce recidivism. The cycle of repeated arrests and incarcerations comes at a high cost to this community and to the victims of future crimes.”
The county was one of 49 eligible for $3.75 million in state Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse funding. Monroe County will receive $60,000 to support the program.