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      Interim Commissioner of Mental Health



The Department of Mental Health oversees mental disability services for over 48,000 Erie County residents each month through contracts with 42 community based agencies, including the Erie County Medical Center and Erie County Departments of Senior Services, Social Services and Youth Services. The Department of Mental Health is administratively responsible for planning, directing, coordinating, and monitoring programs of prevention, treatment and rehabilitation involving mental health, mental retardation-developmental disabilities, problem gambling and, alcohol and substance abuse services. A wide range of services and programs are provided within the City of Buffalo and fifteen municipalities throughout Erie County. You can contact the Department at 716-858-8530 for additional information and preview a listing of agencies under contract with the Department, along with a brief description on its website.

In addition to its primary administrative function, the Department of Mental Health, through its Forensic Mental Health Service, performs referrals, evaluations, and screenings on behalf of Erie County Family Court and Criminal Court Systems. In addition, Forensic Mental Health Service provides follow up treatment for mentally ill individuals under the jurisdiction of the Courts, Probation Department, Correctional Facility and Holding Center. The telephone number for this Service is 858-8095.

The Department of Mental Health also manages the Assisted Outpatient Treatment (AOT) Program for Erie County mandated under the recently enacted New York State law commonly referred to as "Kendra's Law". This Program provides an enhanced array of services for eligible consumers over the age of 18 who have a history of non-compliance with treatment. Further information about the Assisted Outpatient Treatment Program is included in this website. You can call 858-8095 for additional information, as well.

The Department also administers Federal and State Grants promoting Service Enhancements for Mentally Ill Children, Drug Free Outpatient Services, Juvenile Delinquent Diversion Services, and McKinney Homeless Mentally Ill Supported Housing funded by the United States Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD).



Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today launched “Combat Heroin,” a campaign designed to inform and educate New Yorkers about the risks of heroin and prescription opioid use, the signs of addiction, and the resources available to help.

Mental Health First Aid

You may know CPR and the Heimlich maneuver. You can call 911 - but can you administer first aid in a mental health crisis? Mental Health First Aid is an 8-hour training course that teaches you how to help someone who is developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. This course is delivered by certified Mental Health First Aid USA instructors who complete a 5-day training and meet certification requirements.Contact karlmhacompeer@gmail.com for more information or to schedule a training.

Interim Commissioner Announced

The Erie County Department of Mental Health is pleased to announce the appointment of Deborah A. Goldman as Interim Commissioner effective September 1, 2014. She has an MBA from the State University of New York at Buffalo. Ms. Goldman has extensive experience in Mental Health Administration. She has been with the Mental Health Department since 1991.

Job Opportunities

This is a collection of links to employment opportunities at agencies.