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Newsom plan would treat homeless people with addiction, mental illness

Los Angeles Homeless
Posted at 9:37 AM, Mar 03, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-03 20:36:46-05

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Thursday Governor Gavin Newsom proposed a plan to offer more services to homeless people with severe mental health and addiction disorders. He said it's time to change how the state fights this growing issue.

"There's no compassion stepping over people in the streets and sidewalks. There's no compassion of reading about someone losing their life under 280 in an encampment. There's no compassion in that. I mean, we could hold hands, have a candlelight vigil, talk about the way the world should be, or we could take some damn responsibility to implement our ideals. And that's what we're doing differently here, and that's what we're advancing differently here today."

The proposal by the governor would require all counties to set up a mental health branch in civil court and provide comprehensive and community-based treatment to those suffering from a debilitating psychosis. He said he expects the program called “Care Court” to apply to 7,000 to 12,000 people in California, although not all have to be homeless.

Family members and outreach workers could recommend a person for the court-mandated program.

The governor's office plans to boost the program with more money for psychologists, treatment beds, and services.