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Grant to help Travis County Sheriff's Office deputies access mental health services

The grant for the Travis County Peer Support Project will come from the U.S. Department of Justice.

TRAVIS COUNTY, Texas — The Travis County Sheriff’s Office will receive a $102,045 grant to help improve the delivery of and access to mental health services.

The grant for the Travis County Peer Support Project will come from the Department of Justice’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office) Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act Program, which was authorized by the Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act.

It will help law enforcement better access mental health and wellness services, according to a statement from U.S. Sen. John Cornyn.

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“Because we rely on first responders to keep our communities safe, it is critical that we provide them with the tools they need to do their jobs,” said Sen. Cornyn. “We ask our law enforcement officers to do too much so I will continue working to ensure police in Travis County don’t go without the support they need.”

On Thursday, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission also announced that $45 million in grant funds would be awarded to mental health services and projects across Texas as part of the Community Mental Health Program.

“The Community Mental Health Grant Program allows Texas to provide additional and vital mental health support to residents in need,” said Sonja Gaines, HHS deputy executive commissioner for Intellectual and Developmental Disability & Behavioral Health Services. “Promoting mental health programs in Texas is a priority for HHSC, and grant programs like these provide opportunities to help people across the state who are in need of support.”

The grant funds will go to 53 different entities over two years, funding local mental health and behavioral health authorities, nonprofit organizations, academic institutions and local governmental agencies located across the state.

This $45 million was approved during the 86th Legislature in 2019 to continue the program in 2020 and 2021.

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