Hamilton’s Social Navigator Program extended to 2017

News Dec 16, 2014 Hamilton Mountain News

 By Kevin Werner, News Staff

 Hamilton politicians have extended the popular Social Navigator Program for another two years at a cost of $45,000.

The program was launched in 2011 to assist “at-risk” community members in their dealings with Hamilton Police through needed programs, such as mental health and addiction services.

“The data is not all in,” said Hamilton Mountaincouncillor Terry Whitehead, during the Dec. 15 community and emergency services committee meeting. “It has helped many vulnerable people.”

Ward 2 councillor Jason Farr said the program, which is concentrated in Hamilton’s downtown area, will see even better results once it is evaluated on a longer-term basis.

“This is something we should be proud of,” he said.

The program, once it is approved by politicians at their Dec. 17 council meeting, will be extended until June 2017.

A recent evaluation of the program revealed that all the participants that were interviewed felt the SNP provided valuable assistance for their needs, allowing them to connect with services and agencies they would otherwise have missed. In addition, city staff stated there was a decline in the number of police incidents before and after people used the program.

In 2012, a limited study that looked at 43 clients found that there had been a 54 per cent reduction in criminal offenses after SNP involvement; a 92 per cent decline in mental health calls; and a cut in the number of aggressive panhandling tickets received.

In 2013 a total of 91 individuals were referred to SNP, and an analysis found a 72 per cent reduction in all incidences a year after using SNP; a 78 per cent decline in the number of mental health incidents involving individuals; and a savings in the use of an officer.

Social agencies overwhelming agreed that SNP played an important role in assisting troubled individuals.

City staff stated that while preliminary data on the benefits of the program look promising, a longer evaluation period is needed to gauge the effectiveness of SNP.

The program works when Hamilton Police officers identify individuals in need and are referred to a paramedic who then directs a client to the appropriate health or social agency. The main categories the person could be involved include mental health, income, housing, addiction counseling, employment, and health care.

Hamilton’s Social Navigator Program extended to 2017

News Dec 16, 2014 Hamilton Mountain News

 By Kevin Werner, News Staff

 Hamilton politicians have extended the popular Social Navigator Program for another two years at a cost of $45,000.

The program was launched in 2011 to assist “at-risk” community members in their dealings with Hamilton Police through needed programs, such as mental health and addiction services.

“The data is not all in,” said Hamilton Mountaincouncillor Terry Whitehead, during the Dec. 15 community and emergency services committee meeting. “It has helped many vulnerable people.”

Ward 2 councillor Jason Farr said the program, which is concentrated in Hamilton’s downtown area, will see even better results once it is evaluated on a longer-term basis.

“This is something we should be proud of,” he said.

The program, once it is approved by politicians at their Dec. 17 council meeting, will be extended until June 2017.

A recent evaluation of the program revealed that all the participants that were interviewed felt the SNP provided valuable assistance for their needs, allowing them to connect with services and agencies they would otherwise have missed. In addition, city staff stated there was a decline in the number of police incidents before and after people used the program.

In 2012, a limited study that looked at 43 clients found that there had been a 54 per cent reduction in criminal offenses after SNP involvement; a 92 per cent decline in mental health calls; and a cut in the number of aggressive panhandling tickets received.

In 2013 a total of 91 individuals were referred to SNP, and an analysis found a 72 per cent reduction in all incidences a year after using SNP; a 78 per cent decline in the number of mental health incidents involving individuals; and a savings in the use of an officer.

Social agencies overwhelming agreed that SNP played an important role in assisting troubled individuals.

City staff stated that while preliminary data on the benefits of the program look promising, a longer evaluation period is needed to gauge the effectiveness of SNP.

The program works when Hamilton Police officers identify individuals in need and are referred to a paramedic who then directs a client to the appropriate health or social agency. The main categories the person could be involved include mental health, income, housing, addiction counseling, employment, and health care.

Hamilton’s Social Navigator Program extended to 2017

News Dec 16, 2014 Hamilton Mountain News

 By Kevin Werner, News Staff

 Hamilton politicians have extended the popular Social Navigator Program for another two years at a cost of $45,000.

The program was launched in 2011 to assist “at-risk” community members in their dealings with Hamilton Police through needed programs, such as mental health and addiction services.

“The data is not all in,” said Hamilton Mountaincouncillor Terry Whitehead, during the Dec. 15 community and emergency services committee meeting. “It has helped many vulnerable people.”

Ward 2 councillor Jason Farr said the program, which is concentrated in Hamilton’s downtown area, will see even better results once it is evaluated on a longer-term basis.

“This is something we should be proud of,” he said.

The program, once it is approved by politicians at their Dec. 17 council meeting, will be extended until June 2017.

A recent evaluation of the program revealed that all the participants that were interviewed felt the SNP provided valuable assistance for their needs, allowing them to connect with services and agencies they would otherwise have missed. In addition, city staff stated there was a decline in the number of police incidents before and after people used the program.

In 2012, a limited study that looked at 43 clients found that there had been a 54 per cent reduction in criminal offenses after SNP involvement; a 92 per cent decline in mental health calls; and a cut in the number of aggressive panhandling tickets received.

In 2013 a total of 91 individuals were referred to SNP, and an analysis found a 72 per cent reduction in all incidences a year after using SNP; a 78 per cent decline in the number of mental health incidents involving individuals; and a savings in the use of an officer.

Social agencies overwhelming agreed that SNP played an important role in assisting troubled individuals.

City staff stated that while preliminary data on the benefits of the program look promising, a longer evaluation period is needed to gauge the effectiveness of SNP.

The program works when Hamilton Police officers identify individuals in need and are referred to a paramedic who then directs a client to the appropriate health or social agency. The main categories the person could be involved include mental health, income, housing, addiction counseling, employment, and health care.