Pre-Arrest Diversion Infrastructure Program

In the FY18 budget, Governor Haslam and the Tennessee General Assembly provided $15 million in funding for pre-arrest diversion infrastructure.  This non-recurring funding was competitively bid to grantees with a goal of supporting local communities in infrastructure development aimed at reducing or eliminating the time individuals with mental illness, substance use, or co-occurring disorder spend incarcerated by redirecting them from the criminal justice system to community-based treatment and supports.  An essential component of the process was leveraging local funding to support the state's investment.  Through this process, local partners were able to commit $4 million to supplement the funding from TDMHSAS.

In the FY20 budget, Governor Lee and the Tennessee General Assembly provided an additional $1.5 million for a second round of pre-arrest diversion infrastructure grants.  Applicants were asked to focus on rural, underserved, and distressed areas of the state with emphasis on local community investment to sustain programming after the capital grant.  Selected agencies have designed programs to serve residents of at least eleven rural counties including two distressed counties.  Grant recommendations were made by TDMHSAS, in consultation with the Department of Finance and Administration, and will be administered by the Department of General Services after approval by the State Building Commission.


1. Successfully develop infrastructure and services aimed at diverting individuals with behavioral health needs away from jail to appropriate community-based treatment.

2. Implement effective community strategies to better serve individuals in psychiatric crisis, safely reduce the prevalence of individuals with behavioral health needs in local jails, and reduce costs related prosecution and incarceration.

3. Demonstrate a collaborative and coordinated system-wide approach among local behavioral health providers, law enforcement, and the judicial system within the community to pre-arrest diversion.

FY20 Community Partners

Lead Agency: Volunteer/Hiwassee Mental Health Center

Crisis services will be expanded to include a 24/7 walk-in-center with observation and respite services located in Cleveland to serve Bradley and surrounding counties.  An existing crisis stabilization unit in Hamilton County will be available to support the expanded crisis services.

Lead Agency: Pathways Behavioral Health Center

Crisis services including a walk-in-center and crisis stabilization unit located in Humboldt to connect clients to treatment and services for Gibson, Crockett, Dyer, Obion, Lake, Weakley, Benton, Carroll, and Haywood Counties

Lead Agency: Morgan County Government

In partnership with Ridgeview Behavioral Health, facility for co-located community services in Wartburg, Morgan County

FY18 Community Partners

Lead Agency: Mental Health Cooperative

Key Partners:

  • Metro-Nashville Government
  • Metro-Nashville Health Department
  • Metro-Nashville Police Department
  • Davison County Sherriff's Office
  • Metro-Nashville General Hospital

Lead Agency: Volunteer Behavioral Health

Key Partners:

  • Johnson Mental Health Center
  • Hamilton County Sheriff's Department
  • Chattanooga Police Department
  • Hamilton County and City of Chattanooga Governments
  • District Attorney
  • Mental Health Court   

Lead Agency: Knox County Government

Key Partners:

  • Helen Ross McNabb Center
  • Knox County Sherriff's Office
  • City of Knoxville
  • Knoxville Police Department
  • Knox County District Attorney's Office
  • Public Defender Office
  • Homeless Services Providers

Lead Agency: Helen Ross McNabb Center

Key Partners:

  • Hamblen County Government
  • Morristown Police
  • Hamblen County Sheriff's Department
  • Local community providers
  • Local community college
  • Public Defender Office
  • District Attorney Office
  • Recovery Court

Lead Agency: Madison County Government 

Key Partners:

  • Madison County Sheriff's Office
  • 26th Judicial District Office of Attorney General
  • Pathways of Tennessee, Inc.
  • T.A.M.B. of Jackson (Aspell Recovery Center)
  • Jackson Area Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependency
  • Madison County Jail
  • City Court
  • General Sessions Court and Circuit Courts

Lead Agency: Volunteer Behavioral Health

Key Partners:

  • Plateau Mental Health Center
  • Putnam County Sheriff's Office Department
  • Cookeville Police Department
  • Satellite Med
  • Putnam County Health Department
  • District Attorney
  • Cookeville Regional Medical Center

Lead Agency: Alliance Healthcare Services

Key Partners:

  • Memphis Police Department including the CIT Officers
  • Shelby County Government including the Mental Health Court and Public Defenders Office
  • Memphis Fire Department
  • Western District of TN Probation Office
  • Local hospitals

In the News

Local News Coverage


Official Photos from Governor Haslam's Photographer




News Releases

TDMHSAS Expands Successful Jail Diversion Program
Knox County Government Awarded $3.4 Million
Alliance Healthcare Services Awarded $3.1 Million
Madison County Government Awarded $3.1 Million
Mental Health Cooperative in Davidson County Awarded $2.6 Million
Volunteer Behavioral Health in Putnam County Awarded $400,000
Volunteer Behavioral Health in Hamilton County Awarded $350,000
Helen Ross McNabb Center in Hamblen County Awarded $184,325