By Mark Eichmann
For too long, the criminal justice system has served as the default mental illness and addiction treatment system. That’s according to Josh Thomas, executive director of the National Alliance on Mental Illness Delaware chapter. As a result, those struggling with substance use or mental health issues are often kept from getting the treatment they need. Efforts to reverse that trend have been underway in New Castle County for several years. The county’s police department is now combining a new behavioral health unit into several programs designed to help those with substance use disorder and mental health issues.