I have written about the work of our Mobile Outreach Team assisting those in mental crisis situations who now works in concert with Bluebonnet Trails Community Services for 24/7 coverage throughout the county.
I’ve written about the mental health work in our courts, balancing the law with an individualized approach to best suit the accused suffering from mental illness.
Soon, coming to us all will be the response “911, do you need police, fire, EMS or mental health services?” I’ll write about this later this year.
Six months in, how has our sheriff’s office evolved to appropriately work with those suffering from mental health challenges?
Individuals with mental illness are inordinately represented in arrests and incarcerations in our country’s jails.
Mike Gleason campaigned in 2016 to be our sheriff as the candidate with a demonstrated background of compassionate mental health work both inside and outside law enforcement. Has that translated into a kinder workforce in Williamson County’s patrols and jail?
Below is a letter from an inmate with mental illness to his mom that she shared with Sheriff Gleason and allowed me to share here:
ok mama heres my letter, now just sayin, idk the sheriffs name but here we go,
to the sheriff of williamson county, ... i am an inmate of the county jail and at the time of this letter i will have been here 37 days, i must give praise where it is due sir/ ma'am, this is my 2nd stay in your facility however i am extremely surprised that it has changed so much since my 1st visit. during my st stay, which was 88 days, i witnessed 18 people get tazed, not that im able to say they deserved it or not but this time im glad to say that not 1 individual has been tazed, your CO's and deputeys have more compassion