by Eliza Schafler
Eliza Schafler is an MHAS Equal Justice Works Fellow sponsored by Greenberg Traurig, LLP.


Last week, I shared the news that medical-legal partnership (MLPs) were officially celebrated in The New York Times. This week, I have more good news that’s even closer to home: our own Behavioral Health-Legal Partnership (BeHeLP) has officially been listed as an MLP by the National Center for Medical-Legal Partnership. This means that we meet the strict definition of MLP set by the nation’s most prominent organization supporting the model.

Why does the title of this post read, “on the map?” Because the National Center for Medical-Legal Partnership has developed a map on its website that helps users find MLPs throughout the country. When you search “California,” Hathaway-Sycamores and Mental Health Advocacy Services are both listed as MLP partners. And when you click either of our agencies, a page devoted to BeHeLP appears. It includes a link to a full-page “snapshot” of our project – check it out here.

The National Center for Medical-Legal Partnership website also provides a wealth of information on the other inspiring MLPs in Southern California and throughout the country. In addition, it offers wonderful materials explaining the model and the benefits it brings to low-income communities. Anyone interested in this work should take some time to explore it.

Our place on this map is a reflection of our hard work, and success, in integrating legal services into the provision of outpatient children’s mental health treatment.