LEAD® in Multnomah County

In 2017, County and City leaders launched a pilot project called LEAD® or Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion. The pilot was an effort to reduce future criminal behavior by people involved in low-level drug offenses and reduce the number of persons of color being arrested and referred to the criminal justice system. Multnomah County and The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation's Safety and Justice Challenge funded the pilot, and Central City Concern was contracted to provide intensive case management services for LEAD® participants. 

The LEAD® pilot program ended in 2021. Multnomah County Behavioral Health is developing a modified program that builds and expands the harm reduction approach of the current LEAD® model and incorporate components of prevention, harm reduction, treatment, and recovery. Administration of this new program transitioned from Central City Concern to the Multnomah County Behavioral Health Division on July 1, 2021.

The current program is called PATH (Providing Access To Hope). This team prioritizes Black, Indigenous and other People of Color who are at risk for legal engagement and houselessness and face challenges including substance use and mental health. The purpose of the team is to help people prioritize their goals, access resources that will help them achieve those goals, and access resources to address substance use and mental health concerns as barriers to accessing those goals.  Visit the PATH website.

Past Documents


 LEAD Evaluation Executive Summary Year 2 (776.28 KB)

 LEAD Evaluation Year 2 (1.77 MB)

 Multnomah LEAD Analysis of Jail Use Among Year One Participants__March 2020 (1.75 MB)

 LEAD Policy Document (610.08 KB)

 Frequently Asked Questions (179.11 KB)

 Signed Commitment of Collaboration (1.1 MB)


 Misión Y Propósito (465.63 KB)

 Preguntas Frecuentes (206.31 KB)

Partners and Developers

The LEAD® Pilot project was developed and monitored by a collaborative of law enforcement agencies, public officials, and community groups including: Black Male Achievement Initiative, Citizens Crime Commission, City of Portland--Mayor's Office, Community Members, Gresham Police Department, Joint Office on Homelessness; Metropolitan Public Defender's Office, Multnomah County Chair's Office​, Multnomah County District Attorney's Office, Multnomah County Department of Community Justice, Multnomah County Mental Health and Addiction Services Department, Multnomah County Sheriff's Office, and the Portland Police Bureau.

Chair Deborah Kafoury speaks to the media at LEAD press conference and launch
Left to Right: LPSCC Director Abbey Stamp and LEAD Project Coordinator Laura Cohen; Central City Concern and Multnomah County celebrate the launch of LEAD®; Commissioner Lori Stegmann observes press conference

Community Engagement

Community engagement and transparency is a critical component to LEAD®. Through a series of community events, LEAD® policy makers sought input and shared information with members of the community.

November 16, 2016 Community Event Visual Representation (2.39 MB)

March 21, 2017 Community Event Visual Representation (1.63 MB)

Multnomah County and community members participate in first LEAD Community Engagement event.