The first Mental Health Court in Oklahoma was established in November of 2002. At that time, the Oklahoma County Mental Health Court was the only program of its kind in Oklahoma designed to divert individuals with a mental illness, developmental disability or co-occurring mental health and substance abuse disorder from a jail or prison sentence after having been charged with a crime.
In 2006, the Cleveland County Mental Health Court, also called the Cleveland County Anna McBride Court, was established with the goal of providing participants with any necessary mental health, and any other recommended services in the hope of reducing the likelihood for the individuals involved to engage in further criminal activity or behavior.
Participation in the Cleveland County Mental Health Court is voluntary and based on the individual needs of each participant. The court takes into consideration many factors when deciding participant eligibility including, but not limited to:
The Court Team consists of Judges, Assistant District Attorneys, Attorneys from the Oklahoma Indigent Defense Services, Licensed Behavioral Health Professionals, Psychiatrists, Case Managers, Recovery Support Specialists and Law Enforcement personnel.
Referrals to the Mental Health Court Program come from a variety of sources including self-referral. Following a referral, a process of interviews and screening must be completed before the team makes a decision about the appropriateness of the individual for participation in Mental Health Court services.