Guilford County has been making a lot of security changes this year and now there’s another one on the way.
The county is transferring security duties for the Guilford County Behavioral Health Center at 931 Third St. in Greensboro from the Guilford County Sheriff’s Department to the Guilford County Security Department.
The new center, which is meant to offer wholistic treatment for troubled individuals is designed to be a “one door” or “no wrong door” portal for mental health and drug abuse cases.
The original agreement between Guilford County and Cone Health for the operation of the facility called for Guilford County to provide sworn officers on duty all day and all night.
In the county’s 2020-2021 fiscal budget, to meet that obligation, the Guilford County Board of Commissioners approved funding for five sworn deputy positions for the Guilford County Sheriff’s Department.
Information county staff recently provided to the Guilford County Board of Commissioners states, “The desire for sworn positions were initially identified to help improve the efficiency of the involuntary commitment process for area law enforcement resources. After re-assessing the agreement, now that the center has been opened, the Guilford County Sheriff’s office is requesting to end involvement at the Behavioral Health Urgent Care Facility as of October 10, 2022, and to be released from any further duty to dedicate sworn Sheriff’s Deputies to provide 24 hour/7 days a week, law enforcement presence at the BHUC. The Sheriff has submitted this request based on operational needs and current staffing resources.”
Chairman of the Guilford County Board of Commissioners Skip Alston said this week that the move makes sense for the county.
“This will allow the sheriff to put his deputies to their highest and best use,” Alston said.
The county will continue to work with its partners to review all of its operating procedures at the mental health center now that it’s fully operational and now that everyone involved has more knowledge regarding what to expect.