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Denton County Specialty Courts receive grant

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Alex Reed, Gary Henderson and Joe Mulroy present Judge Tiffany Haertling with a $10,000 check for Denton County Family Drug Court from the Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team.

The philanthropy of a private donor will empower necessary client support services for three Denton County Specialty Courts in the coming year.

Following a March 2017 vote, the Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team presented $10,000 checks to Denton County Drug Court, Family Drug Court, and Mental Health Treatment Court.

The funding will support the development of evidence-based pilot programs that provide supportive and interventive services including substance dependence treatment, counseling services and other necessities such as public transit passes.

The work done by Denton County Specialty Courts enables more effective behavioral health treatment while both reducing the financial burden of behavioral health on the criminal justice system and offering alternatives to criminal prosecution for people with behavioral health needs. Supporting programs through specialty courts is one method through which the Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team effects system level change to repair and restore lives affected by behavioral health.

“The infancy of the court limits access to government and private funding,” said Judge Brody Shanklin, presiding judge of Denton County Drug Court.

Judge Tiffany Haertling, presiding judge of Denton County Family Drug Court, emphasized the restoration of healthy families through intensive treatment and recovery support. “More can and must be done to break the cycle of child abuse and parental drug addiction in Denton County,” said Haertling.

Judge Coby Waddill, presiding judge of Denton County Mental Health Treatment Court, expressed his gratitude to the District Attorney’s office for their continued engagement and support of Denton County Specialty Courts. Judge Waddill also serves as an appointed member of the Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team.

Each of the judges emphasized the necessity for a coordinated, communal approach to behavioral health treatment. They and treatment team members thanked the philanthropic donor whose funding will empower their courts to help more people.

“I appreciate this community, the United Way of Denton County, and the donor who has invested in the lives of these people,” said Judge Shanklin.

For more information about the Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team visit the organization’s website at www.DentonCountyBHLT.org.

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