The Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors has increased funding and staffing for the County’s Behavioral Health Navigator Program. According to a press release published by Supervisor Joe Simitian, the program, which launched in July 2022, serves as a “one-stop shop, designed to help those who encounter challenges or barriers when seeking mental health care.” Simitian’s office stated that the increased funding is the result of a demonstrated use of the program by the public.
Program advocates like Simitian contend that the often “complicated, confusing, and bureaucratic” system of mental health programs and services presents barriers to accessing these vital resources. Simitian’s colleagues on the Board seem to not only agree that the problem exists, but also that the County’s solution is working. After the program was unanimously approved in November 2021, the Board’s January 2023 decision to increase funding and staffing enhances a system of peer navigators that offer services such as:
- Personalized assistance to get help for behavioral health needs
- Peer guidance about options for wellness services and support
- Knowledgeable information and resources for mental health, substance use, suicide prevention, support groups, and more
- Connection to County and community based resources
The Behavioral Health Navigator Program is available to Santa Clara County residents and can be accessed by calling (800) 704-0900 (option #4), by emailing BHNavigator@hhs.sccgov.org, or by visiting two drop-in locations in San Jose at either 1075 East Santa Clara Street or 871 Enborg Court.