Page title

Law Enforcement and Behavioral Health Partnerships for Early Diversion

Main page content

Short Title
Early Diversion Grants
Initial Announcement
Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO)
NOFO Number
Posted on
Application Due Date
Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number
Intergovernmental Review (E.O. 12372)
Applicants must comply with E.O. 12372 if their state(s) participates. Review process recommendations from the State Single Point of Contact (SPOC) are due no later than 60 days after application deadline.
Public Health System Impact Statement (PHSIS) / Single State Agency Coordination
Applicants must send the PHSIS to appropriate State and local health agencies by application deadline. Comments from Single State Agency are due no later than 60 days after application deadline.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS), is accepting applications for fiscal year (FY) 2018 Law Enforcement and Behavioral Health Partnerships for Early Diversion grants. The purpose of this program is to establish or expand programs that divert adults with a serious mental illness (SMI) or a co-occurring disorder[1] (COD) from the criminal justice system to community-based services prior to arrest and booking.  Special consideration will be given to applicants proposing to use grant funding to support early diversion services for veterans.

Data indicate that a significant number of individuals that come in contact with law enforcement and the criminal justice system have a mental disorder.  The U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, reported that 1 in 7 state and federal prisoners (14 percent) and 1 in 4 jail inmates (26 percent) reported experiences that met the threshold for serious psychological distress. Approximately one-quarter of a million individuals with serious mental illnesses are incarcerated at any given moment – about half are arrested for non-violent offenses, such as trespassing or disorderly conduct.  Approximately one quarter of a million individuals with serious mental illnesses are incarcerated at any given moment—about half arrested for non-violent offenses, such as trespassing or disorderly conduct[2].

Effective diversion programs begins with establishing collaborative partnerships between law enforcement and community providers.  Establishing clearly defined and sustainable partnerships is the first of four core strategies in the International Association of Chiefs of Police’ One Mind Campaign and the first element of the Crisis Intervention Team’s ten core elements.

[1] Co-occurring disorder refers to the presence of both a mental and substance use disorder.

[2] U.S. Department of Justice | Indicators of Mental Health Problems Reported by Prisoners and Jail Inmates (PDF | 444 KB)


Eligibility is statutorily limited by Section 9002, 21st Century Cures Act (P.L. 114-255) to states; political subdivisions of states; and Indian tribes and tribal organizations as defined in Section 4 of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act or through agreements with other public and private non-profit entities.  For example,

  • States and territories, including the District of Columbia, Guan, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Northern Mariana Islands, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands., and the Republic of Palau.
  • Governmental units within political subdivisions of a state (e.g., counties, cities, towns, villages).
  • Federally recognized American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) tribes, tribal organizations, and consortia of tribes or tribal organizations.

Tribal organization means the recognized body of any AI/AN tribe; any legally established organization of AI/ANs which is controlled, sanctioned, or chartered by such governing body, or which is democratically elected by the adult members of the Indian community to be served by such organization, and which includes the maximum participation of AI/ANs in all phases of its activities. Consortia of tribes or tribal organizations are eligible to apply, but each participating entity must indicate its approval. A single tribe in the consortium must be the legal applicant, the recipient of the award, and the entity legally responsible for satisfying the grant requirements.  

Award Information
Funding Mechanism
Anticipated Total Available Funding
Anticipated Number of Awards
Up to 8
Anticipated Award Amount
Up to $330,000 per year
Length of Project
Up to 5 years
Cost Sharing/Match Required?

Proposed budgets cannot exceed $330,000 in total costs (direct and indirect) in any year of the proposed project.  Annual continuation awards will depend on the availability of funds, recipient progress in meeting project goals and objectives, timely submission of required data and reports, and compliance with all terms and conditions of award.

Funding must be used to supplement, not supplant, sources of funding that would otherwise be available.

Funding estimates for this announcement are based on an annualized Continuing Resolution and do not reflect the final FY 2018 appropriation.  Applicants should be aware that funding amounts are subject to the availability of funds.  

Contact Information
Program Issues

David Morrissette, Ph.D., LCSW
CAPT, US Public Health Service
Center for Mental Health Services, SAMHSA
Rockville, MD. 20857one: 240-276-1912

Grants Management and Budget Issues

Gwendolyn Simpson
Office of Financial Resources, Division of Grants Management
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
(240) 276-1408

Last Updated

Last Updated: 11/19/2020