ALLERTON, the Bronx (PIX11) — People in mental health or substance abuse crisis now have a new place to turn to in the Bronx. 

Mayor Eric Adams announced the opening of the Bronx Support and Connection Center Wednesday in the Allerton neighborhood. Local first responders will be able to bring people to the center when they are in need of help instead of taking them to the emergency room or to jail. 

“Our answer to those who were seeking help was to lock them up and place them on Rikers Island,” the mayor explained. “That’s the system we had.”

People brought to the Bronx Support and Connection Center will be able to stay for a few hours or a few days, depending on their level of need. Services include peer support, psychiatric care, and even medically supervised substance withdrawal. 

New York City Health Commissioner Dr. Ashwin Vasan believes the Bronx support and Connection Center “is exactly the kind of place where we want New Yorkers brought out from underground or other street encampments to be brought over time to begin their journey for recovery.”