The memo states the partnership with Fulton would be temporary, and the long-term use of the facility would be based on the city’s final decision on the detention center’s future.
A pending City Council resolution would set up the closure of the detention center within 15 months. Last year, a task force recommended the it be demolished and replaced with a center focused on equity and community services.
Atlanta is also seeking to use its detention center to set up a 24/7 drop-off and community referral site for the city’s Policing Alternatives and Diversion Initiative, the memo states. The PAD program helps people facing poverty, substance abuse and mental health issues get access to services rather than be arrested for a non-violent offense.
Bottoms hopes to establish a working group made up of city, county and state officials to create a “resources services center” to offer job training, job placement, behavioral health, housing and healthcare services, per the memo.
The mayor and Fulton County Chairman Robb Pitts “have been engaged in direct conversations about the Atlanta City Detention Center over the last several months,” Matthew Blakely, a spokesman for Pitts, said in a statement. “Those conversations were private and we are not disclosing any specifics from them at this time. Staff from the county and the city have also been discussing the matter, though nothing has been finalized at any level.”