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City Manager's Office
City Manager's Office
Press Contact: Matthai Chakko, (510) 981-7008

GIVE INPUT ON MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES
Use City online forum designed for civility

Berkeley, California (Thursday, May 09, 2019) - Use the City of Berkeley's online forum to let us know what you see as needs for mental health services in our community. 

We'll use your input on the forum as one element in how we decide to use state Mental Health Services Act funds, which currently support a broad range of local prevention, early intervention, wellness and treatment services. 

As one of only two state-funded Mental Health agencies that aren't counties, the City of Berkeley receives services more tailored to our needs. This funding, known through the acronym MHSA, has in the past supported:

  • the expansion of the Mobile Crisis Team, which uses mental health professionals to work alongside police officers during mental health crises
  • the creation of a Transition Outreach Team that attempts to link everyone who has a mental health crisis to ongoing care
  • high intensity treatment teams for both adults and children who have high levels of need
  • a future Mental Health Wellness Center that will be open to all residents of Berkeley and Albany

And much more. Having this unique direct funding from the State allows Berkeley to develop specific services based on our community's needs.

After receiving the input, Berkeley Mental Health will develop a plan for the next fiscal year, starting July 1, 2019,  plan that will explain how we'll use our funding over the next  year. A draft plan will be available for a 30 day review and presented at a public hearing to the Mental Health Commission in June.

Mental Health Commission Hearing on MHSA funding
June 27,  2019, 7pm
Basement, Multipurpose Room
1947 Center Street.

In the interim, visit our online forum on mental health needs and weigh in on what services you believe should be offered. 

Community members can, at any time, provide feedback to the Mental Health Services Act Coordinator, Karen Klatt at kklatt@cityofberkeley.info. Visit the Berkeley Mental Health website to learn more about what we do.  

Registered users on Berkeley Considers - found at cityofberkeley.info/considers- can post their comments online with or without their name. Anyone can view registered comments. The goal of the forum is to broaden civic discourse in a constructive and civil manner.

On Berkeley Considers, each person will be allowed one comment, a feature enforced through registration and through the platform operator's analysis of 25 different fraud detection data points, such as IP addresses, browser identity and similarity between email addresses.

The forum will also be moderated so that comments comply with our guidelines for civility, which prohibits elements such as hate speech, personal attacks or obscene materials.

In the process, the intention is to create a more informed community and provide City with a broader array of voices.

The platform is operated by OpenGov, which has used its software and services to broaden civic discourse around the country and Canada.

When registering, you will be asked for your name and home address. This confidential information is used only by OpenGov to identify statements from residents in and near Berkeley - so that users know which statements are from local residents. They will keep your information confidential, they do not accept advertising, and they will not share contact information, as noted in the company's Privacy Policy.

Online forums are not social science, nor scientific polling. But, as with public comment, it is intended to provide the City with additional data to help in its decision making process.

Look at the question before you. Consider what others are saying. Let the City know what you would like them to consider for Berkeley.

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