Multi-Agency Crisis Outreach and Support Team (COaST) Receives Grant and National Recognition

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Lake County Sheriff John D. Idleburg is proud to announce that the sheriff’s multi-agency Crisis Outreach and Support Team (COaST) received national recognition and a local grant last week.

COaST has been recognized with a 2024 Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties (NACo). This award honors innovative, effective county government programs that strengthen services for residents.

Each year, NACo’s Achievement Awards recognize outstanding programming in 18 categories aligned with the vast, comprehensive services counties provide. The categories include children and youth, criminal justice and public safety, libraries, management, information technology, health, civic engagement and more. Launched in 1970, the program is designed to celebrate innovation in county government.

The multi-agency component of COaST became operational in January of 2022 and consists of members from Gurnee Police Department, Lake Forest Police Department, Libertyville Police Department, Lincolnshire Police Department, Mundelein Police Department, Vernon Hills Police Department, and the Lake County Sheriff’s Office. A police officer from one of these local agencies and a sheriff’s deputy from the sheriff’s office partner with a social worker, clinician, or peer specialist to respond to mental health related calls.

Since the inception of the multi-agency team, COaST responded to dozens of mental health calls in progress. This allowed trained professionals to deploy at the scene, spend as much time as necessary with the person in crisis, and allow the first-responding deputies/police officers to return to emergency calls for service.

“The Achievement Awards recognize excellence in county government and effective public service,” said NACo President Mary Jo McGuire. “This year’s winners have delivered results for our residents and demonstrated innovative efforts to strengthen our communities.”

Additionally, Illinois State Senator Adriane Johnson was able to secure a $250,000.00 operational grant for COaST. This grant was a line item in the Illinois FY25 budget that was passed during the legislative ‘Spring Session’ and signed by the Governor on June 5, 2024. The funds can be used for general operational expenses, staffing, capacity building, and equipment.

“We are thrilled NACo recognized the innovation and importance of our multi-agency COaST program! Additionally, the funds secured by Senator Johnson will greatly improve our ability to aid those in mental crisis. Our COaST program was one of the first in the nation, and we are so incredibly proud of its success. We have been able to provide services to thousands of Lake County residents since the program’s inception.”

— Sheriff John D. Idleburg

“I support the award-winning Lake County COaST program because it aligns with one of my top priorities: ensuring the safety of residents who are struggling with mental health issues that require intervention and treatment instead of punishment. Sheriff John Idleburg and his dynamic team, along with several police chiefs from Lake County proactively implemented the COaST program to provide training, resources and tools to properly and safely respond to calls involving mental health concerns. I will continue supporting effective and compassionate programs that prioritize people and safety.”

— Adriane Johnson, State Senator of the 30th Legislative District

COaST is supported in part by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Safety and Justice Challenge, in partnership with the Livingroom Wellness Center.



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