DETROIT – Police officers in Detroit are getting new tools and training on how to spot when someone is having a mental health crisis and what they need to do to deescalate those situations.
Marcus Harris II is with the Detroit Police Department and an instructor for Crisis Intervention Training.
“CIT, Crisis Intervention Training is a 40-hour training. We train officers around the state of Michigan,” Harris said.
It’s a partnership between the department and the Detroit Wayne Integrated Health Network. The main topic is how to identify when someone is having a mental health crisis.
“The program is pretty much to give resources, to give help to the community, to provide safety to the officers that’s coming into contact with people with mental crisis. This is definitely needed. This training teaches you how to be patient. How to be passionate,” Harris said.
Detroit Police Department Captain Tonya Leonard-Gilbert said they are interacting with more people who may have mental health issues.
“We’re in hopes of reducing the use of emergency services for individuals that are experiencing the mental health crisis,” Leonard-Gilbert said.
Leonard-Gilbert said there are levels to the program.
“We’re hoping that we’ll be able to provide our citizens of Detroit the resources, the services, the support they need,” Leonard-Gilbert said.