ICYMI: San Francisco opens transitional housing for justice- involved adults with mental health and substance use needs
San Francisco, CA — Mayor London N. Breed, the San Francisco Department of Public Health (SFDPH), and the San Francisco Adult Probation Department (SFAPD) today announced the opening of a new transitional housing facility at 509 Minna Street for justice-involved adults who are experiencing homelessness and have complex mental health and substance use disorders.
The Minna Project is a partnership between SFDPH and SFAPD in collaboration with community partners Westside Community Services for program and property management. The 75-bed facility provides wraparound services designed to aid the transition to independent living after involvement with the justice system. The services include outpatient mental health and substance use disorder treatment; case management; medication management; support groups; and recreational activities. The Minna Project also supports participants in recovery through group therapy, peer support, and medication-assisted treatment for substance use disorders.
“As we continue to make progress on expanding our shelter options for people struggling on our streets, we need to ensure that we are investing in all of our communities, especially individuals who are justice-involved,” said Mayor Breed. “509 Minna reflects what we can do when City departments come together to create a community-based approach that will help us break the cycle of people going from the justice system to the streets and back again. With better coordination, more focused services, and housing options, this site can make all the difference in the lives of justice-involved San Franciscans.”
“The Minna Project is San Francisco’s latest example of serving those most in need, holistically and compassionately,” said Supervisor Matt Dorsey. “The journey to recovery is a long and difficult one as is, so I can only imagine the uphill battles for those simultaneously facing housing insecurity and other personal challenges along the way. I look forward to the many success stories ahead for those supported by The Minna Project and how we can continue to expand these initiatives. Thank you, Mayor Breed, our City agencies, and advocates that made this a reality.”
Individuals with behavioral health needs are overrepresented in the justice system, with up to one-third of all jail inmates receiving behavioral healthcare. This population is also disproportionately affected by homelessness and the overdose epidemic.
“These individuals are often experiencing multiple crises in their lives and greatly need a support system to catch them and provide stability and continuity of services so they can begin to make lasting positive change in their lives,” said Director of Health, Dr. Grant Colfax. “We also know that the challenges of racism, homelessness, incarceration, and social stigma can cause deep trauma and require a compassionate, culturally-congruent approach to care. I am pleased that Minna Street will provide that for San Franciscans who need it most.”
“I’m so proud of the programs my department has developed, which have all been driven with input from the formerly incarcerated and recovery community,” said Chief Probation Officer, Cristel Tullock. “It’s paramount that we, as a city, do not shy away from the real impact drugs are having on our community. The Minna Project provides a safe and supportive environment, ensuring justice involved adults have a true opportunity to rebuild their lives. We are excited to partner with SFDPH on this community led initiative, which responds to the criminogenic needs of those in the justice system. The launch of the Minna Project enhances our ability to safely reduce San Francisco’s jail population and provides critical recovery and mental health services which lead to independence and self-sufficiency.”
The Minna Project will help participants achieve their goal to live independently. The facility premises will be maintained as an alcohol and drug free environment to create a safe space. If participants use drugs, SFDPH and SFAPD staff will do whatever it takes to help people with mental health or drug use conditions maintain their residence and move towards wellness and recovery.
The Reentry Division of SFAPD will coordinate the delivery of onsite services through community partners. This team, led by formerly incarcerated people, has developed a portfolio of reentry and rehabilitative programs for justice-involved adults that promote recovery and independence. SFDPH will fund the transitional housing program and develop the clinical behavioral healthcare services available for Minna Project participants.
The new facility at 509 Minna adds 75 beds to SFDPH’s residential care and treatment programs and is part of a 400-bed expansion over the coming years to provide more spaces and overnight options. After 509 Minna opens, SFDPH will have opened 70 percent or 268, of the planned 400 new beds. The facility soft launched in early May, connecting initial guests to community services until the program ramps up for onsite wraparound services by Fall.