Community Impact: Western Circuit Treatment and Accountability Court
The Western Circuit Treatment and Accountability Court of Athens supports individuals facing legal charges who have ongoing mental health and addiction problems. Its aim is to assist them in their recovery, reducing the likelihood of further legal issues.
“You should not be punished for your mental health or your addiction,” said Kristen Daniel, Western Circuit Treatment and Accountability court coordinator. “I hate seeing these people in custody when they can get help instead.”
The Jackson EMC Foundation recently awarded a grant of $18,200 to the Western Circuit Treatment and Accountability Court to fund respite apartments for participants in the Treatment and Accountability Court (TAC) program. The program is a partnership of court, law enforcement and community mental health treatment providers, and provides temporary stable housing for four participants at a time. The goal is to help these individuals transition into their own permanent and stable housing so the program can accommodate more participants.
Participants also have stipulations they must follow in order to receive the help they need. Drug screenings and curfews are a few of the requirements mandated by the court.
"It is a sort of intense probation period,” said Daniel. “I really have seen people go from fully symptomatic to having a full-time job and stable living situation."
To learn more about the Western Circuit Treatment and Accountability Court, visit accgov.com/1231/treatment-and-accountability-court.