The Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) was mandated with developing the state’s Justice Reinvestment Program through the passage of Prop 207, the proposition that legalized recreational marijuana use for adults 21 and older as well as created initiatives to increase safety and community resilience around arrest and incarceration, including the Justice Reinvestment Program.
The Justice Reinvestment Program is administered by the ADHS Office of Health Equity, which uses a community-centered, data-driven approach to running the program.
The Office started by completing a statewide data and funding landscape analysis to determine which local communities were most impacted by drug enforcement, arrest, and incarceration. The analysis identified priority communities across the state, where 18 listening sessions were held. Listening session participants expressed the following services would be beneficial for their communities:
• Neighborhood safety and community gathering infrastructure (such as parks, community centers, etc.)
• Cultural awareness training
• Accessible options for healthy food
• Affordable and accessible housing
• Stigma reduction and culturally appropriate health services
• Technology re-training for people who have been formerly incarcerated
• Positive youth development
• Substance use education and prevention
The Office of Health Equity then released a competitive grant application open to qualified Arizona nonprofits to support Justice Reinvestment programming this year. The awarded projects address all of the key focus areas outlined in the statute and in the community listening sessions and represent communities from across the state of Arizona. ADHS is proud to announce the following grant awardees:
• Northland Family Help Center
• Hushabye Nursery
• Axiom Community of Recovery
• Cihuapactli Collective
• Stuck Community Acupuncture, Inc
• Phoenix Indian Center
• Arouet Foundation
• Friendly House
• Jobs for Arizona’s Graduates (JAG)
• Constructing Circles of Peace
• Regional Center for Border Health, Inc. – Yuma
• Regional Center for Border Health, Inc. – Parker
• Arizona Democracy Resource Center
• Southern Arizona Legal Aid, Inc.
• The Bambi Fund
• Just Communities Arizona
• Our Sister Our Brother
Moving forward, the Office of Health Equity will develop a robust program evaluation process to ensure that funded projects serve the intended communities and create a positive impact. The program evaluation will assess if awardees meet their determined goals and the data collected will be used in efforts to continuously improve the program. The Office will also facilitate a Community of Practice for all awardees and interested stakeholders to share best practices, lessons learned and build partnerships to support the communities served.
Additional Justice Reinvestment funding will be made available in the near future. Previous and new applicants are encouraged to apply. Visit the ADHS Office of Health Equity’s Justice Reinvestment Program page for updates.