FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders approved the continued funding of four Crisis Stabilization Units across the state, including one in Northwest Arkansas.
After it was at risk of closing, NWA’s crisis stabilization unit will continue to receive $90,000 from the state every month for the foreseeable future.
According to Washington County Judge Patrick Deakins, the state had planned to decrease their funding by $30,000 dollars.
“We were told that that was going to drop to $60,000 a month after the end of September. That’s a 33% drop. We can’t absorb that as a county. And that’s why it’s so incredibly important that we get this funding restored to its $90,000 per month level,” said Judge Deakins.
The unit in Fayetteville offers an alternative to incarceration for those dealing with mental health crises which county sheriff Jay Cantrell says is needed.
Not everyone needs to come to jail from a law enforcement perspective. Having that tool that we can divert someone from jail is critical. And so I’m thankful that the governors elected to keep the funding source fluid and to keep it solvent for another year,” Sheriff Cantrell said.
The services at the CSU are offered in partnership with the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.
Washington County Judge Patrick Deakins says if the funding was reduced, it would jeopardize their partnership.
“When funding is an issue that breaks down our relationship with UAMS without this funding, without the state continuing to contribute and maintain its promise through its partnership, this would not be possible for Washington County or our region. we would lose this asset,” said Judge Deakins.
The CSU will receive the funding through June 2024.