Mayor Lori Lightfoot campaigned on a promise to re-open six mental health clinics that her predecessor shut down, but her 2020 budget kept them closed. A seventh center that Rahm Emanuel privatized remained so.
Instead, Lightfoot earmarked $9.3 million to increase capacity at the five remaining city clinics and support “20 trauma-informed centers of care” in “areas of greatest need impacted by violence and poverty” on Chicago’s South and West Sides.
On Tuesday, the mayor moved to strengthen the “trauma-informed” mental health system she is trying to build — by awarding $8 million in annual grant funding to 32 community-based organizations.
Designated organizations will work in tandem with the city’s remaining mental health clinics to create what the mayor calls a “mental health safety net system” that provides care to anyone who needs it.
Of the 32 “funded proposals,” 30 will expand mental health services for children, adolescents and young