TULSA — A center designed to provide an alternative for men and women detained for public intoxicated opened in Tulsa on Tuesday.
The Sobering Center, 12 & 12 Inc., provides a jail diversion program for adults who suffer with alcoholism or other addictions.
“In a model that has worked across the country, Tulsa is developing an option for individuals that will lead toward greater self-care and better outcomes while providing substantial cost savings to our Tulsa Police Department and Municipal Courts based on reduced jail and police expenses,” Mayor G.T. Bynum said.
At the discretion of the detaining police officer, adults detained for public intoxication, who have not committed other crimes, will be taken to the center for a 10-hour period to “sleep it off.” The adults will be provided food and information about and access to counseling and rehabilitation programs.
The adults will then be released without criminal charges or a record of arrest.
The facility is not open to the public.
“The Sobering Center will have an immediate positive impact and benefit to the community and the Tulsa Police Department,” Tulsa Police Deputy Chief Jonathan Brooks said. “Police operations will benefit by reducing the amount of time officers dedicate to individuals struggling with substance abuse, which in turn will allow officers to return to patrol faster to address other pressing matters throughout the city. The Sobering Center is a true community policing approach that will benefit the city collectively by reducing burden on the entire criminal justice system.”
The city of Tulsa will provide $250,000 annually to 12 & 12 to operate the center.