AMOS Leverages $1.8M to Diversify & Retain Local Mental Health Workers
This week, Polk County Supervisors approved AMOS' proposal to invest $1.8 million in ARPA funds to diversify and retain mental health providers through a scholarship and loan forgiveness program. This win is the result of over 10 months of organizing work including:
- Hundreds of conversations in Mental Health Civic Academies that surfaced workforce needs, including to fully staff the Children's Mental Health Crisis system AMOS worked so hard to secure
- A 'Mental Health Provider Summit' in December to understand providers' specific workforce needs and barriers
- 100+ AMOS leaders contacting Polk County supervisors in support of AMOS' mental health workforce proposal
- 4 AMOS leaders testifying at a Polk County Supervisors meeting to share the need for this investment, particularly for refugee and immigrant communities
- AMOS representation at mental health task force meetings by a First Unitarian leader
AMOS leaders plan to continue to work with Polk County to ensure that the funds are administered to maximize accessibility and impact.
AMOS Leader Rev. Dr. Black Profiled for Legacy of Justice
The media ritual of the exit interview in which a journalist sits down for reflective conversation with a public figure leaving office or moving away shouldn't be confined only to elected officials or CEOs.Read more
AMOS Points out Local Progress on Juvenile Justice
The Rev. Dr. Brigitte Black and Rev. Denny Coon pointed out that over a year ago they, as clergy leaders of AMOS, 'lamented the alarming increases in the filings of delinquency and detention holds on Polk County juvenile .... the disproportionate impact that was having on youth of color.' Their words triggered a firestorm of news stories, government studies and efforts to address root causes of the situation. AMOS clergy point out that amidst that firestorm, signs of hope emerged...
Polk County Makes Progress on Juvenile Justice, Des Moines Register
AMOS Backs Courthouse Plan at 'Restorative Justice' Meeting
After a year of observing juvenile judicial hearings at the Polk County Courthouse, and identifying a 767% increase in misdemeanor holds for African American youth, AMOS leaders identified several ways to better protect youthful offenders. 200 leaders strategized about desired reforms at their 'Restorative Justice' conference, and voted to support a Polk Courthouse renovation plan, which includes several of AMOS' ideas , and which would require passage of a bond proposal in early November. The proposed plans include space for pretrial conferences and mediation; a system to keep youthful offenders away from adult offenders; discreet spaces that keep youth out of the public eye when brought into the courtroom; and a setup allowing for juveniles to sit eye-to-eye with judges in the courtroom.