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When an individual is being supported by CoLEAD, there is a sense of hope that the criminal legal cycle can be broken through intensive outreach and support in the community.

—Heather Aman, Assistant City Prosecutor, City of Seattle

CoLEAD model of care:

  • CoLEAD builds safer communities through harm-reduction-oriented non-punitive case management for vulnerable adult individuals, addressing their basic needs including access to resources, such as entitlements, physical healthcare, mental health and substance-use-disorder treatment including Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT), employment and education, permanent housing, and reconnection with family and natural supports.
  • CoLEAD answers shelter-in-place needs for vulnerable adults living outside who have historically been contacted by police and often arrested and taken to jail for crimes of poverty and criminalization of substance use and homelessness. CoLEAD provides outreach, engagement, temporary lodging and supports that are community-based and person-centered solutions to meet basic human needs and connect to ongoing resources.
  • CoLEAD provides shift-based, intensive on-site support focused on case management and access to social services. CoLEAD has lodging liaisons who serve as the go-between CoLEAD outreach responder staff and the hotel. All CoLEAD participants agree to a lodging agreement that outlines program and lodging expectations with Covid related rules.
  • CoLEAD outreach responders provide intensive on-site support at the lodging locations for participants seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., including weekend shift coverage.
  • CoLEAD medical providers assess participant healthcare and related needs, coordinating primary healthcare, addressing urgent care needs, and arranging behavioral health services.
  • CoLEAD partners with the Wheeler Davis Conglomerate (WDC) Safety Team, who has BIPOC community-sourced support staff to provide overnight presence and crises co-response with CoLEAD as a new first responder model to prevent police and other emergency response activation.
Participant Data

WDC Safety Team leverages the community relationships and credibility of our team members, providing well-trained safety teams to deescalate and prevent conflict. Working with partners in a variety of contexts (social service organizations, shelters, schools, transit), WDC provides a responsive alternative to law enforcement response in many appropriate situations.

CoLEAD in Seattle/King County is currently:

  • Deploying a team of intensive outreach responders and case managers, along with medical care providers.
  • Placing people identified by defense lawyers, prosecutors, jails and the courts as needing stabilization and support in the community, in temporary lodging in motels and hotels, whenever such a placement appears viable. Up to 200 hotel rooms will be secured, mostly in hotels that normally serve a traveling population that is not booking rooms due to COVID-19 restrictions.
  • Addressing the basic needs of CoLEAD participants, using gift cards, providing cell phones, access to food, sanitation supplies, and crisis management needs.
  • Providing 24/7 on-call response to crisis needs.

CoResponders in the community