The Center Collaborative

Creative Solutions in Behavioral Health and Criminal Justice

From the Oregon Center on Behavioral Health and Criminal Justice, the Center Collaborative podcast shines a light on partnerships that are moving the dial, leading to better solutions and outcomes for people who may become involved with the justice system due to experiencing behavioral health, intellectual/developmental disabilities, or neurocognitive concerns.

We talk with guests representing prominent voices from government, the judicial system, public safety, healthcare, and the broader community throughout metropolitan and rural parts of Oregon.


Episodes are released every other Wednesday

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Recent Episodes

Episode 19: Conclusion of Season 1

The Oregon Center on Behavioral Health and Justice Integration (OCBHJI) launched our podcast in March of 2021 and after 18 fantastic episodes, we’ve reached the end of season 1.

We’d like to thank our amazing guests for sharing their programs and insights with us, as well as our fantastic listeners for your support.

After a brief holiday break, we will return for Season 2 in the new year with more nuanced and thoughtful conversations about what works.

In the interim, please reach out to us if you have ideas for guests or topics you’d like featured on the program. You can reach us on OCBHJI’s Facebook page, or you can email us at ocbhji@gobhi.org .

We’d also love to hear your thoughts about the podcast in general, please rate and review us on your favorite podcast app.

Thank you so much for your support of our podcast – we could not spread the word on what is working without our listeners or our guests.

Have a happy and healthy holiday season! We look forward to releasing season 2 episodes in the New Year!

Episode 18: Peer Respite Centers: Fostering wellness through building community (Part 2 of 2)

Kevin Fitts, Executive Director of the Oregon Mental Health Consumers Association discusses:

  • What peer respite centers provide to consumers;
  • Filling gaps by providing services that aren’t covered by Medicaid;
  • Redefining workloads in the system to include more peers;
  • The importance of peer voices within policy groups;
  • Building community and long term supports to bolster hope and support wellness;and
  • The need for damp and wet housing in Oregon

For more information about Peer Galaxy, please visit https://www.peergalaxy.com/

Episode 17: Peer Respite Centers: Fostering wellness through building community (Part 1 of 2)

Kevin Fitts, Executive Director of the Oregon Mental Health Consumers Association discusses:

  • The focus of the Oregon Mental Health Consumers Association;
  • The importance of the voices of people with lived experience at the table;
  • The need for a tiered system to meet people where they are when they seek help before they are in crisis;
  • Peer respite to help bolster hope and meaning, support wellness, and build community; and
  • The recent passage of a bill at the legislature for four regional peer respite centers in Oregon. One of which will specialize in working with an underserved BIPOC community.

For more information about the Oregon Mental Health Consumers Association, please visit http://omhca.org/

Episode 16: Supporting a Person-Centered Justice System (Part 2 of 2)

Judge Suzanne Chanti & Judge Nan Waller, Circuit Courts Judges and Co-chairs of the Chief Justice’s Behavioral Health Advisory Committee (BHAC) discuss:

  • Stigma, lack of resources, and the impact on procedural justice;
  • The role of a compassionate community in changing the system;
  • Building in flexibility to meet people where they are with the acknowledgement of the barriers they face;
  • Engaging treatment courts (speciality courts) participants in their vision of a meaningful life and building hope to support behavior change; and
  • The momentum for change within Oregon and OJD’s Behavioral Health Advisory Committee (BHAC) work.

Episode 15: Supporting a Person-Centered Justice System (Part 1 of 2)

Judge Suzanne Chanti & Judge Nan Waller, Circuit Courts Judges and Co-chairs of the Chief Justice’s Behavioral Health Advisory Committee (BHAC) discuss:

  • The definition of procedural justice, which is also known as procedural fairness;
  • The importance of slowing down and using plain language, listening, and involving people in the court process;
  • How this folds into trauma informed processes;
  • The importance of the judicial system being aware of and suppressing their personal biases and values;
  • Cultural Competency;
  • Mindfully incorporating procedural fairness into the courtroom and throughout the courthouse;
  • Reaching out on a human level; and
  • Vicarious trauma in the courtroom.

Episode 14: Nuances and Mechanics of Civil Commitment (Part 2 of 2)

Terry Schroeder, OHA Civil Commitment Coordinator within the Certification, Licensure, and Technical Assistance Department discusses:

  • Who is the examiner and what do they do in the process;
  • What the bar is for an initial commitment versus if there is expanded criteria; 
  • The nuance around if someone is willing and able to participate voluntarily in treatment; 
  • Assisted Outpatient Treatment (AOT) – What is the bar? What is the process?;  
  • The importance of meaningful treatment; and
  • The importance of families continuing to reach out for help.

Episode 13: Nuances and Mechanics of Civil Commitment (Part 1 of 2)

Terry Schroeder, OHA Civil Commitment Coordinator within the Certification, Licensure, and Technical Assistance Department discusses:

  • What civil commitment looks like in the state of Oregon;
  • Civil commitment placements within the continuum of care, not just at the state hospital;
  • What is considered at different steps within the civil commitment process; 
  • The emphasis on due process and voluntary engagement in treatment;
  • The importance of coordinated work between law enforcement and the crisis worker;
  • The sticking point in switching lanes between the forensic track and the civil track;
  • What the crisis worker and physician consider for holds; 
  • Who is the investigator and what are they responsible for; 
  • The impact of vicarious trauma on crisis workers & the importance of self care and postvention interventions.

Episode 12: How Oregon turned the dial on juvenile justice reform (Part 2 of 2)

Ari Wagner, Chief Operating Officer for Greater Oregon Behavioral Health, Inc (GOBHI) and the Director of Operations which is the department that The Center is under. Ari discusses:

  • Why scaring, educating, and exercising someone out of crime doesn’t work;
  • Exposure to childhood trauma as a risk factor for engagement in the criminal justice system and the importance of one stable and supportive adult in a child’s life as a protective factor;
  • Juvenile SIM work at The Center;
  • The importance of looking at the data and asking questions around over representation in the juvenile justice system, so changes can be made; and
  • Ari’s book about the juvenile justice system, “Dispatches from Juvenile Hall: Fixing a Failing System” under the name Linda Wagner.

For more information about “Dispatches from Juvenile Hall: Fixing a Failing System” by John Aarons, Lisa Smith, and Linda Wagner:

https://www.amazon.com/Dispatches-Juvenile-Hall-Fixing-Failing/dp/0143116223#:~:text=A%20revolutionary%20book%20that%20offers,institutions%20are%20failing%20to%20curtail

Episode 11: How Oregon turned the dial on juvenile justice reform (Part 1 of 2)

Ari Wagner, Chief Operating Officer for Greater Oregon Behavioral Health, Inc (GOBHI) and the Director of Operations which is the department that OCBHJI is under discusses:

  • Ari’s position as the first juvenile justice researcher in Oregon and the significant role she played  in determining the recidivism rate for juvenile offenders, as well as development of a risk assessment tool to help determine placement within the system;
  • How the juvenile system is different from the adult system and how a majority of youth in the system receive treatment in the community instead of within an institution;
  • The importance of preventing juveniles from further penetration into the criminal justice system by encouraging treatment engagement while supporting public safety; and
  • We also discuss the risk factors for juvenile criminal behavior, how that informs treatments, and some of the factors that must be addressed to help a youth engage in treatment.

Episode 10: “How can we do better?” Clackamas County Jail’s Intentional Approach to Suicide Prevention (Part 2)

NOTE: Please listen to episode #9 to hear part one of this interview.

Captain Lee Eby, Clackamas County Jail Commander; and Galli Murray, Clackamas County Health, Housing, and Human Services Suicide Prevention Coordinator discuss:

  • Re-screening at the 2 week mark using the Adult In Custody’s (AIC) tablet. This volunteer screening works great for people who are hesitant to talk, but will respond to electronic questions. The tool automatically sends alerts so the AIC can be seen by behavioral health;
  • Increased communication in the institution for AICs- brochures, information on ID cards, posters, orientation video;
  • AIC’s free access to the Clackamas County Crisis Line;
  • Increased communication with loved ones – jail website, posters in visiting, and the message loved ones hear when they call to talk to AICs; 
  • Enhanced training for staff; 
  • The new Behavioral Health Discharge Planner position, which coordinates continuity of care for AICs upon release; and 
  • The importance of a robust staff wellness program. 

Links to topics in the podcast: 

Brief Jail Mental Health Screen 

Columbia-Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS) 

Suicide is Forever. Missouri DOC video male facilities  

Female facilities 

Clackamas County Jail: Suicide Prevention Resources 

QPR (Question. Persuade. Refer.) Suicide Prevention Training 

Episode 9: “How can we do better?” Clackamas County Jail’s Intentional Approach to Suicide Prevention

Captain Lee Eby, Clackamas County Jail Commander; and Galli Murray, Clackamas County Health, Housing, and Human Services Suicide Prevention Coordinator discuss:

  • Collaborative mapping of the incarceration process and data collection to uncover opportunities for improvements to the system;
  • Common myths about suicide;
  • The impact of suicide on fellow Adult In Custody (AIC) and the staff, as well as to the loved ones of the person who died;
  • Normalizing talking about suicide; and
  • An improved screening process for suicide.

Join us next time for Part 2 of our conversation, as we talk about more improvements to Clackamas County’s Program.

Links to topics in this podcast:
Brief Jail Mental Health Screen

Columbia-Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS) 

Taylor v Barkes 

Episode 8: Trauma-Informed Justice: Comfort dogs and more in the Beaverton Municipal Court

Juliet Britton, Beaverton Municipal Court Presiding Judge, discusses:

  • The importance of addressing concerns early with repeated low level crimes to connect people to services to support long term stability and decrease recidivism in the future at the municipal court level;
  • The Mental Health Liaison position at the court – a clinician in court to provide coordination and connection to civil services and housing, which has lowered the court’s failure to appear rate and is showing a promising reduction in recidivism rates; 
  • The comfort dog program for court participants and for staff through a partnership with Dove Lewis. Dogs in court (virtual and in-person) increase feelings of calm and relaxation with participants who are coping with significant symptoms and trauma history. The dogs are also brought in for staff as a way to promote staff wellness within a stressful work environment; and 
  • Beaverton Police Department’s Community Policing Program and their collaboration with the court. Police build rapport with participants in the community and take the time to have conversations with participants to support their involvement in programming and the court.   

For more information about treatment courts, see OCBHJI’s treatment court toolkit.

For more information about trainings offered by OCBHJI, visit our training page.

Social media for Dove Lewis PACTT (Dog Therapy Teams):
Facebook – @fortheloveofdove;
Instagram – @dovelewispdx;
Twitter – @dovelewis.

Social Media for the City of Beaverton:
Twitter – @CityOfBeaverton;
Facebook – @CityOfBeaverton;
Instagram – @CityOfBeaverton.

Episode 7: Judge Wolke: Promoting Public Safety by Strengthening the Civil System

Judge Pat Wolke, Josephine County Mental Health Court Judge; Co-Chair of the Workgroup to Decriminalize Mental Illness; and Member of the Chief Justice’s Behavioral Health Advisory Committee discusses:

  • His work to strengthen the pathways into the civil system as a diversion from the criminal justice system, particularly in regards to civil commitment and assisted outpatient treatment (AOT).
  • What AOT is and how it can be useful.
  • The connection between the difficulty around the civil process and fitness to proceed numbers.
  • The importance of mental health courts in changing people’s lives while supporting public safety.

Episode 6: Marion County Crisis Services: Cultivating Engagement in Treatment and Promoting Public Safety Through A Compassionate Approach

Ann-Marie Bandfield, Manager of Crisis Services for Marion County Health and Human Services, discusses:

  • How Marion County’s 24/7 Psychiatric Crisis Center (PCC), which just celebrated its 25 year anniversary in August 2020, got started and how it focuses on community based services;
  • The business culture focusing on compassion and welcoming service, as well as building trust over time with consumers; 
  • Thinking outside the box regarding small steps to support psychiatric and social stability; and
  • Starting small to build services over time within the community.

Episode 5: It’s All About Relationships: The Evolution of a Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) Program and Mobile Crisis in Coos County

Ross Acker, Advanced Health CCO Director of Coordinated Care & a Licensed Professional Counselor; Megan Ridle, Coos Health and Wellness Brief Treatment Crisis Services Manager & a Licensed Professional Counselor; and Kelley Andrews, Retired Coos County Sheriff Office Captain discuss:

  • Building relationships with partners from the ground up;
  • The evolution of partnerships and programs within Coos County; 
  • The importance of CIT being about relationships and not just a training; 
  • Coos County’s work on starting a sobering center; and
  • Discussion of cases that highlight the importance of behavioral health and law enforcement working together. 

For more information about CIT in Oregon, visit OCBHJI’s CIT page. For more information about the partnership between OCBHJI and DPSST via the Crisis Intervention Teams Center of Excellence (CITCOE), visit our CITCOE page

Episode 4: Beacons of Hope in Multnomah County: Commissioner Sharon Meieran

Commissioner Sharon Meieran, Multnomah County Commissioner, lawyer, and ER doctor discusses:

  • What fuels her passion for her work around behavioral health as a commissioner and an ER doctor; 
  • The importance of intervening upstream and meeting people where they are when providing behavioral health and wraparound services, as well as the importance of engaging people with lived experience while designing interventions;
  • How Sequential Intercept Mapping (SIM) helps identify gaps, opportunities, and duplications within the behavioral health and criminal justice systems; and
  • New programs in Multnomah County: provider-based crisis response; a no wrong door crisis center with drop off or walk in to access services; a resource and respite center with peers to meet people where they are along with a mental health based shelter and longer term transitional housing. 

Episode 3: Klamath County: Yoga for trauma work and other innovations in a rural community

Stan Gilbert, Klamath Basin Behavioral Health (KBBH) Executive Director, discusses how collaboration with community stakeholders has resulted in the following innovations:

  • Behavioral Health embedded in the Community Corrections office, resulting in same day warm handoffs to behavioral health staff upon first check in upon release from prison/jail.
  • KBBH’s certification as a yoga studio, so therapists can be certified in yoga for bodywork for trauma work. 
  • KBBH’s certification as a Certified Community Behavioral Health Center (CCBHC), which has been a gamechanger for funding, and thus has fueled more innovations.
  • Klamath County stakeholders’ commitment to braided funding to support the upcoming sobering center.

Episode 2: How Treatment (Specialty) Courts Change Lives

Danielle Hanson, Oregon Judicial Department Statewide Specialty Court Coordinator, discusses: 

  • What are treatment/speciality courts? 
  • How do they work?  
  • How do they change lives? 
  • Why is it important to adhere to evidence based practice? 
  • How have the courts adapted to COVID?

Episode 1: Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities (I/DD): Addressing the Needs of a Hidden Population

Diane Scottaline, Executive Director of The Arc of Benton County, and Members of The Arc of Benton County, John and Cody, discuss: 

  • What kinds of disabilities are included in this population?
  • Why is the community experiencing I/DD considered a hidden population regarding the intersection of behavioral health and criminal justice? 
  • The importance of providing accommodations, not just services.
  • The use of CommCards to support communication and accommodation in educational, medical, and legal settings.

Link to CommCard application from the Arc of Benton County

Preview Episode