Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams today announced two new initiatives to offer better programs to address two long-running county problems – persistent homelessness and adult men who are at high risk for repeat stays in the county jail. The County has signed contracts with private funders for $11.5 million in success payments in order to begin serving approximately 550 individuals in need. Two local nonprofits –The Road Home and First Step House—will operate the programs. They were chosen through a competitive bid process and have agreed to a rigorous independent evaluation to verify that both homelessness and recidivism numbers decrease
The Homes Not Jail program will provide services to improve housing stability, criminal justice and behavioral health outcomes for the persistently homeless. Homes Not Jail will offer 315 individuals a range of housing assistance and support services including access to behavioral health treatment and employment counseling. Rental assistance through the private rental market and intensive case management are included in the six-year project.
The second program is known as REACH (Recovery, Engagement, Assessment, Career, and Housing) and will be managed by First Step House. REACH will serve approximately 225 formerly incarcerated adult males who are at high risk for additional criminal charges -- many of whom have moderate to severe substance use disorders. The program goal is to provide behavioral health treatment, housing and case management services in order to lower the rate of recidivism, help them recover stable lives and reduce costs to taxpayers.