From Harm to Health: Centering Racial Equity and Lived Experience in Mental Health Crisis Response


Fountain House is a national mental health nonprofit fighting to improve health, increase opportunity, and end social and economic isolation for people most impacted by mental illness.

From Harm to Health offers a holistic and comprehensive framework to transform how we address mental health emergencies – from a reactive system driven by public safety goals and procedures, to a preventative, health-first approach that centers racial equity, lived experience, systemic challenges, and cultural competency. It is a report created by The Front End Project- a collaborative effort that aims to set forth a vision and strategies rooted in public health to transform how mental health emergencies (or “crisis”) develop and are handled, which in many communities heavily relies on or defaults to law enforcement. It centers racial equity and lived experience to identify and advance how communities can effectively respond to mental health emergencies and crises without the use of the criminal legal system. The Front End Project is led by Fountain House, in collaboration with the Center for Court Innovation (CCI), The W. Haywood Burns Institute, the Technical Assistance Collaborative (TAC), and the Mental Health Strategic Impact Initiative (S2i), with support from the Ford Foundation.