Boston Medical Center’s Criminal Justice Diversion programs include three mental health court sessions, the Boston Outpatient Assisted Treatment program, and a growing Boston Police Co-Responder program. BMC’s Emergency Services Programs also support improved outcomes for individuals who come into contact with the criminal justice system, through partnerships such as one with the Town of Winthrop’s Community and Law Enforcement Assisted Recovery (CLEAR) program and regular participation in mental health trainings for police, court staff, and other first responders. 

Boston Outpatient Assisted Treatment Program (BOAT)

Created in partnership with the Massachusetts Trial Court, BOAT is an assisted outpatient treatment program that is the first of its kind in the state of Massachusetts. Under the BOAT program, participants have access to a multidisciplinary treatment team, along with scheduled court monitoring and supervision. People eligible for the program include those with serious mental illness (SMI) and people with SMI and co-occurring substance use disorders who have come to the attention of the Boston Municipal Court

Mental Health Court

A pretrial diversionary or post-conviction program that serves criminal defendants who have mental health and co-occurring substance use concerns. MHC offers treatment and intensive social services to help these individuals achieve recovery, maintain stability, and avoid incarceration. There are currently three mental health court sessions within the Boston Municipal Courts located at the BMC Central, West Roxbury, and Roxbury courts.

Police Co-Responder Program

Specialized clinicians respond to 911 calls for service alongside officers and provide on-site triage and clinical support that expands options for the outcome of a call to police. Co-responders bridge communication between the Boston Police Department and the behavioral health system, helping to divert arrests and connect individuals with needed services to remain safely in the community.

Department