The Cook County Mental Health Court: Development, Implementation, and Initial Implications

Book chapter appearing in Treating Addicted Offenders: A Continuum of Effective Practices, Vol, II, edited by Kevin Knight and David Farrabee, and published by Civic Research Institute (2007). Although some jurisdictions across the country have one problem-solving courtroom to meet the needs of people with serious mental illness, Cook County's sheer volume of cases would overwhelm a single specialized courtroom. Instead, Cook County's large, complex system required a much broader and systemic approach in which a wide array of high-level officials, treatment providers, and client advocates shared equally in the conceptualization of and planning for the program. This article describes the Cook County Mental Health Court Program's design, implementation, early outcomes, policy implications, and lessons learned.

The article was authored by Lisa Braude at TASC.

State: Illinois
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