gmhTODAY Summer 2022 - Page 55

County Update

With Santa Clara County Supervisor Mike Wasserman

Summer 2022

Supervisor Mike Wasserman is the President of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors . He was elected to the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors in 2010 and re-elected in 2014 and 2018 . He represents District 1 , which includes Gilroy , San Martin , Morgan Hill , and 300,000 people in San Jose .

In 2015 , I worked with the mayors and police chiefs of Morgan Hill and Gilroy to address the high arrest and conviction rates of “ Public Safety Realignment ( AB109 )” individuals residing in South County . Soon after , the County Office of Reentry Services established the South County Reentry Resource Center to serve as a “ one stop shop ” --connecting individuals with a network of local services , support , and supervision as they leave incarceration .

From 2019 to 2021 , the South County Reentry Resource Center provided services for 427 Gilroy , San Martin , and Morgan Hill residents . The Center ’ s impact is evident by the success of clients after graduating from Reentry programs like the Goodwill New Opportunity Work Program and the Custodial Alternative Supervision Program . These programs equip clients with job training , college education , and life skills for coping with life after incarceration . They are some of our most valuable tools for fighting recidivism and creating lasting change in people ’ s lives .
The County maintains two Reentry Resource Centers : one in San Jose and one in Gilroy . Earlier this year , the San Jose location celebrated 10 years of serving justice-involved clients . The South County location opened its doors in Gilroy in February 2018 after a nearly three-year pilot in San Martin .
South County Reentry Resource Center services include :
• Employment referrals to Catholic Charities .
• Medical services through VHHP Mobile Medical Unit .
• Record expungement through the Public Defender ’ s Office .
• Mental Health and Substance Abuse screenings and assessments by Behavioral Health ( BHSD ).
• Faith-based case management services through the Good Samaritan Project .
• Probation support .
• Service navigation through the Never Give Up program .
• A space for Probation officers to meet with their South County defendants .
• Referrals to all of ORS ’ contracted service providers
The Reentry Centers are also safely reducing the County ’ s jail population : On October 1 , 2011 , the County ’ s jail population was 3,452 ; a decade later , the County ’ s jail population was 2,414 – a nearly 30 % decrease ! Moreover , since 2015 , the total average annual jail population has continued to decline . In June 2021 , when compared to the 10 largest counties in California Santa Clara County had the fourth lowest average daily population per 100,000 residents .
Many former Reentry Center clients are now influential leaders in the Reentry network . These shifts in direction happen when people are given options , when peer mentors tell them , “ I was where you were . I had the same fears , doubts , addictions , trauma and gang affiliations that you do ; I accepted help and I changed things in my life .”
Kudos to everyone involved with changing outcomes and improving lives !
South County Reentry Resource Center Tuesdays and Thursdays 8 am - 5 pm : client intakes and services Mondays and Wednesdays 1 pm - 5 pm : client intake Fridays - Closed 8425 Murray Ave . Gilroy , CA 95020 / ( 408 ) 201-0690
Mike Wasserman , District 1 , Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors www . supervisorwasserman . com e-mail : district1 @ bos . sccgov . org office : 408-299-5010
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