Will Trauma Recovery Center Fall Victim to Budget Nightmare?

Victims of violent crime in the city are about to be victimized again — by city budget cuts. Department of Public Health Director Mitch Katz included the city's Trauma Recovery Center in the list of programs to be axed in mid-year budget cuts.

If the Board of Supervisors does not spare $1 million in city funding which is currently keeping the center alive, the mental health clinic on Mariposa in the Mission will shut its doors come March 1, says the TRC's director, Alicia Boccellari. 

One of the cruelest ironies of cutting certain services during budget crises for short-term savings is that it ends up costing the government much more in the long run. That was Public Defender Jeff Adachi's

argument to keep the city from cutting his office's budget: He claimed hiring

private attorneys to represent the clients would end up costing the

city more than simply maintaining funding for the public ones (Adachi lost this quarrel with the powers that be, incidentally).

Boccellari is likely to make the same pitch regarding the 14-employee Trauma Recovery Center, which provides mental health services to more than 700 clients, and helps them to assist law enforcement in

prosecuting those who victimized them. It remains to be seen whether she will be more successful. 

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