The Northern Idaho Crisis Center officially opened this week to serve ten north Idaho counties. Idaho Public Radio’s Glenn Mosley reports. (1:45)
(The ribbon cutting for Idaho’s second crisis center)
It was a full house in Coeur d’Alene Tuesday at the grand opening of the Northern Idaho Crisis Center, which will be managed by Don Robinson:
Don Robinson: “This will be the second crisis center in the state of Idaho and it’s really going to address a huge gap in the community for either an under-served or un-served population of those folks who are experiencing a behavioral health or substance abuse crisis who really have nowhere else to go.”
(Don Robinson, manager of the Northern Idaho Crisis Center)
Robinson says many of those people, if they’re not suffering in silence, would end up either in an emergency room or perhaps arrested and jailed.
The center will address that need by serving those age 18 and older in Idaho’s ten northern counties, and Jon Ness, the CEO of Kootenia Health, says it’s the result of many organizations coming together to make it happen:
Jon Ness: “To me, one of the best parts of this project has been to see the extraordinary level of regional collaboration to have this come together…universal support for it in our community by all the agencies, local, regional, and state.”
(Jon Ness, CEO of Kootenai Health)
The Northern Idaho Crisis Center is the second such facility to be funded by the Idaho State Legislature; the first opened in Idaho Falls about a year ago. Governor Butch Otter says the north Idaho facility will save lives:
Governor Butch Otter: “So this is the portal, through which folks are going to come, and through which their lives are going to be saved, but their lives are also going to be changed. their lives are going to be changed in such a direction that families come back together.”
(Idaho Governor Butch Otter addresses crowd at grand opening)
Officials say the work done at the Idaho Falls facility in the past year has saved lives and money and freed up law enforcement to focus on other issues of public safety. It’s estimated that the east Idaho facility has served almost 2,000 people and those who have worked to make the Northern Idaho Crisis Center a reality hope to impact lives in the same way.
I’m Glenn Mosley.
On the web:
Northern Idaho Crisis Center
Posted December 9, 2015