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Scottsdale, Arizona sits at the base of the McDowell Mountains in Maricopa County and provides a breathtaking year-round landscape to 223,514 full time residents1. The little city, nestled in the Salt River Valley, offers visitors and citizens big-city fun. Tourists refer to Scottsdale as the Southwestern South Beach because of its first-class shopping, nightlife, and hotels that rival those of cities like New York, Miami, and Las Vegas. One of the largest attractions is the Casino Arizona at Talking Stick Resort. The resort provides guests with table and slot gambling, spa treatments, and a breathtaking golf course designed by two-time Master’s Champion Ben Crenshaw. Another big attraction can be found at Taliesin West, the home and school of Frank Lloyd Wright, located at the mountain foothills in the city limits.

 

Mental Health Statistics
The Maricopa County Department of Public Health reported that in 2011, 186 Scottsdale residents died from Alzheimer’s, and 630 were hospitalized for a mental health issue. There were 50 suicides in the city in 2011, down from 64 in 20102. The State Department of Health Services reported that 13.3% of residents living in Maricopa County had poor mental health in the previous month. Additional data revealed that 18.2% of residents cited at least one episode of binge drinking and 6.7% reported having a drinking problem or drinking heavily on a regular basis in 20113.

 

Scottsdale Helps Its Homeless
Among the many mental health and social services offered through Maricopa County is Health Care for the Homeless (HCH). This innovative program works through community outreach, volunteers, primary care professionals, and social workers to offer substance abuse treatment, mental health care, nutritional education services, and case management for homeless individuals living within the county. HCH provides a transitional safety net for homeless residents, helping them receive crisis and emergency care and working to move them from temporary to permanent housing4.

 

On a city level, Scottsdale provides residents with a broad spectrum of services to address social, emotional, and behavioral health issues. Their Victim Services Department works directly with victims of domestic abuse, sexual abuse, and violent crime to provide medical and emotional care, support, and aftercare. The Internet Crimes against Children (ICAC) Department takes a proactive stance on Internet crimes and works with various organizations to ensure the youngest residents are protected from online predators, bullying, and other forms of abuse.

 

One of the most widely accessed resources is the Scottsdale Family Advocacy Center5. Designed to help victims overcome trauma or stress resulting from a crime, the center has spaces dedicated to Child Protective Services, Forensic Nurse Examiners, Probation Officers, and Crisis Intervention Services. The goal is to ensure all evidence is collected in a way that is noninvasive and that care is provided in the most empathetic way possible. The center has been in operation since 2002 and has become a model for advocacy throughout the nation.

 

The city also offers resources through the Family Advocacy Center’s website to educate residents about abuse, neglect, violence, and mental health. Workshops, informative articles, and links to other services are available to help all residents find the help they need for any issues that affect their well-being.

 

1 U.S. Department of Commerce, United States Census Bureau. (2013). State & County QuickFacts. Retrieved from http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/04/0465000.html

2 Maricopa County, Department of Public Health. (2013). Health Status Report for Cities and Towns in Maricopa County 2007-2009. Retrieved from http://www.maricopa.gov/publichealth/Services/EPI/pdf/hsr/2011-City-HSR.pdf

3 Arizona Department of Health Services. (2011). 2011 Arizona Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey. Retrieved from http://www.azdhs.gov/phs/phstats/brfs/reports/brfss-annual-report2011.pdf

4 Maricopa County, Department of Public Health. (2013). Healthcare for the Homeless. Retrieved from http://www.maricopa.gov/PublicHealth/Services/Homeless/default.aspx

5 City of Scottsdale, Arizona, Social Services. (2013). Scottsdale Family Advocacy Center. Retrieved from http://www.scottsdaleaz.gov/assistance/fac