Ipswich police join jail diversion program

Ipswich police will partner with five other North Shore departments to share a clinician who will respond to mental health and substance abuse calls, officials said Tuesday.

The position is funded by a $90,000 grant awarded to the Beverly Police Department by the state Department of Public Health, Ipswich police said in a press release.

The clinician will also work with Essex, Gloucester, Manchester and Rockport on the so-called Jail Arrest Diversion Program, the release stated.

The goal is to direct people to treatment intervention, and away from the criminal justice system.

Ipswich Police Chief Paul Nikas said in a statement that his department is “committed to pursuing every possible avenue” to help residents struggling with substance abuse disorders.


“I’m grateful for the opportunity to join this collaborative effort with our law enforcement partners on the North Shore and am optimistic about the impact it will have on our community,” Nikas said.

Adam Sennott can be reached at adam.sennott@globe.com