Mental Health Court to Get National Exposure

A press release from the McHenry County Circuit Court:

McHenry County Mental Health Court to be part of the National Association for Drug Court Professionals National Training Conference

(Woodstock, IL) Recently the Circuit Court of the 22nd Judicial Circuit was notified by the National Association of Drug Court Professionals (NADCP) that a proposal submitted by Jason Sterwerf, Director of Special Projects, Scott Block, Director McHenry County Mental Health Board and Dan Wallis, Trial Court Administrator was selected for inclusion in the NADCP Annual Training Conference, taking place July 9-12 in Washington, DC at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center.

NADCP annually hosts the world’s largest conference on treatment courts and criminal justice reform. With over 30 tracks and hundreds of sessions, this conference provides training to more than 5,000 attendees on critical topics.

The presentation will highlight the successes and the challenges of the McHenry County Mental Health Court.

Judge Charles Weech p;resides in Mental Health Court.

The McHenry County Mental Health Court will be celebrating ten years of operation in 2017.

Establishing and sustaining the Mental Health Court has provided many challenges as well as offered many learning opportunities.

The program has evolved from the beginning stages of staff and process development to a consistent process, involving many team members and community agencies.

The client treatment protocol has become challenging and ever changing, with treatment ranging from mental illness to co-occurring disorder and drug dependency.

The Mental Health Court process has improved, including evidence based screening assessments to determine clinical and risk/need levels.

In addition to the internal changes, over time the Mental Health Court program has experienced many external changes with community agencies and treatment providers.

During the past ten years the clients of the Mental Health Court experienced the closing of an agency which provided direct behavioral health services, and more recently an additional agency discontinued adult behavioral health services, forcing our program to forge new collaborative relationships with community treatment providers.


Mental Health Court to Get National Exposure — 8 Comments

  1. Ah, the government’s folly of the “war on Drugs” strikes yet again.

    More people are arrested each year for drug-related offenses than any other type of crime, and taxpayers spend tens of billions on arresting, prosecuting and jailing offenders for drug crimes.

    Enter a Kafkaesque world in which one has virtually no rights, is subject to the whims of a single dangerous judge and could end up losing years of one’s life in a dark, unexamined corner of the American criminal justice system.

    Drug courts are locally developed and locally run.

    In them, judges have near complete freedom to choose who to accept, what kind of treatment to mandate, who to incarcerate and for how long and when to deem a participant a “success” or “failure.”

    They lack national standards and, worse, are not accountable to any authority.

    Drug courts that focus resources on people without much of a criminal record, especially those who do not have a drug problem, do little to reduce costs and may actually increase incarceration.

    Drug courts rely heavily on incarceration as a sanction for failing a drug test, missing an appointment or having a hard time following the strict rules of the program.

    Is this really what our judicial system was intended for?

  2. Cindy – I do not think you understand how this particular court works.

    There is a panel of citizens and a program the defendant is required to follow.

    It can and has produced success in McHenry County.

  3. Define success.

    What you may feel is successful, I may feel is unnecessary.

    As with DUI convictions and the costs associated (drug testing, parole, interlock device, court costs, etc) we must scrutinize who is benefiting from programs like this.

  4. As Blago said in the Madigan Documentary,

    How many jobs do you have?

    You know, patronage jobs.

  5. I understand very well, James. Read my coment again. It appears it is you who does not understand! The whole system is a fraud.

  6. Cindy, you DO realize that this program is totally VOLUNTARY, do you not?

    Nobody if FORCED to join the program, much like, I believe, is the cased for the drug court program, of which MENTAL HEALTH court is NOT A PART-seperate programs

  7. No one is forced to watch teevee, either. Yet we have all kinds of brainwashed slaves. Paying taxes to the IRS is also voluntary. How many do you know that opt out of that one? What is your point, alabama?

  8. My point is that you have NO IDEA what you’re talking about

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *