WHY PROSECUTOR-LED DIVERSION?
A key component of a robust prosecutor-led diversion program is the linkage of a program participant to social services that will help address the underlying issues that may be contributing to their criminal behavior. Social services designed to address drug or alcohol abuse, mental illness, or provide help to victims of human trafficking (post-traumatic stress disorder, sexual abuse counseling, etc.) are an integral part of the Prosecutor-Led Diversion Initiative. There are also several additional needs that these participants may present with: housing, employment, life-skills training, public benefits, education, and many more.
Prosecutors and social services providers have a long history of collaboration in delivering such services in both the problem-solving court and the prosecutor-led diversion context. This collaboration has been mutually beneficial because participants get the services they need to turn their lives around, prosecutors can divert individuals from often over-burdened court calendars, and social services providers can connect, or often re-connect, with the very clients that their services are designed to help. The creation of a new prosecutor-led diversion program presents an important opportunity to build upon this history of collaboration and continue to improve communication and understanding between prosecutors and social services providers.