$2.5 Million Prop 47 Grant Awarded to Police Department to Help Formerly Incarcerated Community Members

State funds will assist local agencies in providing services to formerly incarcerated

Published : Tuesday, August 29, 2017 | 5:22 AM

Pasadena Police Lieutenant Jason Clawson before the Pasadena City Council on August 28, 2017

The Pasadena Police Department has been awarded a California Board of State and Community Corrections (BSCC) grant award of $2,511,537, to be used over three years to provide mental health, substance abuse treatment, and supportive services to formerly incarcerated community members.

The Department was the only City police department in the state to be awarded such a BSCC grant, according to Pasadena Police Lieutenant Jason Clawson, who led the grant application process on behalf of the department.

“This is a breakthrough program for this City,” said Mayor Terry Tornek, following Clawson’s presentation at City Hall before the Council on Monday night. Councilmember Victor Gordo echoed Tornek’s comments, calling the award a “proud moment” for the City.

The Pasadena Police Department applied for the Prop 47 grant funds in February of 2017.

Grant funds were recently made available as part of California’s Proposition 47, which was funded by voter-approved initiative on the November 2014 ballot. The proposition released or placed on probation a number of convicted nonviolent offenders. The grant awards will help fund programs designed to help offenders return to the mainstream.

According to Clawson’s presentation, the grant funding will address gaps in services and enhance existing services for local residents returning from incarceration and improve coordination between service providers.

The Pasadena Police Department will act as the lead agency for the grant project, coordinating administrative tasks related to the project, and assuming coordination costs.

The Pasadena Public Health Department will provide intensive outpatient substance abuse and mental health treatment services at Flintridge Center, in one-one and group settings, using a combination of therapy methods. The funds will provide mental health services, substance use disorder treatment, diversion programs and supportive services for people in the criminal justice system.

According to Clawson’s presentation, the grant solicitation required that at least fifty percent of the funds be used to contract with community-based organizations in order to provide services to a target population of adults and/or juveniles who have been arrested, charged with, or convicted of a criminal offense and with a history of mental health issues or substance use disorders.

Grant funding priority was given to projects that promote a regional approach, provide housing-related support, are trauma-informed, and provide other community-based supportive services such as job skills training, civil legal services, and case management.

The grant will fund a number of organizations, all of whom will work closely together to assist the program.

Grant funds will be used by the Flintridge Center for reentry services, which will be provided by Flintridge and nine other service providers, including Amer-I-Can, 2nd Call, Live Above the Hype, ACTS Thrift Store, LA Incubator Consortium, Lake Avenue Church, and others.

The Flintridge Center has provided reintegration support and wraparound services to community members returning from incarceration over the last decade. Last year, Flintridge provided services to over 500 adults, 93% of whom did not return to incarceration. Prop 47 grant funding will increase the total number of individuals served by 250.

Flintridge’s re-entry services include the Apprenticeship Preparation Program, the Career Preparation Program, case management, systems navigation, Record Change Clinics, Know Your Rights & Responsibilities Trainings, community service experience, and PACT Resource Fairs. The Center will subcontract with nine local service providers to deliver Life Skills Trainings for Adults, Life Skills Trainings for Youth, used clothing and household items, legal services, housing and utilities, financial literacy, and an employment development service.

These new services will fill an identified gap for the reentry population. A Substance Abuse Treatment will be provided under the Drug Medi-Cal Program (DMC).

Flintridge Center will fund a new Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), a Care Navigator (Community Service Representative Ill) and a substance abuse counselor. The team will be located within the Flintridge Center to provide a cohesive and integrated approach.

A new Community Services Representative position will work closely with the LCSW and Substance Abuse Counselor, in processing referrals, coordinating services at various sites, ensuring linkages and advocating for clients when required, assisting individuals and families to be able to access behavioral health services and any other supportive services needed, and acting as a resource to help clients reduce barriers to access.

An Amer-I-Can facilitator with over two decades of experience delivering the Amer-I-Can curriculum to gang-impacted community members will conduct outreach with the Flintridge Center Outreach Specialist in community “hot spots” and deliver the Amer-I-Can curriculum. The goal is for these community members to experience relevant services in their own neighborhoods and gradually be transitioned to Flintridge Center for additional services.

The Amer-ICan facilitator will also be providing training to community outreach workers. New funding will be used to pay for 180 hours of Amer-I-Can mentoring and facilitation and 60 hours of facilitation training for community workers each year.

In addition, Live Above the Hype has been providing life skills training to youth in high-need, high-risk circumstances, and will provide youth-focused outreach and life skills training primarily to youth with substance abuse and mental health disorders, who are returning from detention camps. The curriculum merges social-emotional skills with cognitive learning to help promote character development and pro-social values. Live Above the Hype will also provide training to other youth service providers.

ACTS Thrift Store is a current Pasadena nonprofit partner that donates credit vouchers for clothing and household items. Proposed funding will more than double the credit vouchers that case managers are able to provide to constituents.

In addition, The LA Incubator Consortium has been donating its services to recruit and train attorneys and law students to participate in monthly Record Change Clinics at Flintridge Center. With additional funding, their participation can be stabilized and the number of participating attorneys/law students increased, increasing the number of constituents served from 110 to 200.

Lake Avenue Church will also participate in the program, and has been assisting constituents in Pasadena who are at high risk of being evicted. They have been donating both their services and funding. With the proposed additional funding, they will be able to increase the number of community members served, from approximately three per year to 15. Funding will be used to pay late rent and utilities.

Union Station is a longtime Pasadena community partner whose expertise is finding housing for homeless individuals and connecting them to services that help them stay in housing.

Although he argued against Flintridge Center’s contract award in the Spring, maintaining that other local agencies were not sufficiently considered, Councilmember Tyron Hampton also praised the department and the award.