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  • Writer's pictureBill Raines

Lawrence and Orange County Crisis Intervention Training Begins on Monday

LAWRENCE AND ORANGE COUNTIES - MAY 15, 2022 - Training for both Lawrence and Orange County Law enforcement officers Crisis Intervention Training is set to begin Monday at St. Vincent Dunn Hospital.

The Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) program of Lawrence and Orange Counties is locally organized with an aim to build strong relationships between local law enforcement and mental health agencies.

As part of this effort, the CIT program of Lawrence and Orange Counties are providing training and education to law enforcement officers to assist them in managing crisis events when they, as first responders, encounter individuals who are experiencing behavioral health crises due to mental illness and/or co‐occurring substance use disorders.

Crisis Intervention Teams is a pre-arrest jail diversion that promotes and supports collaborative efforts to create and sustain more effective interactions among law enforcement, mental health care providers, individuals with mental illnesses, their families, and communities and reduce the stigma of mental illness.

The first crisis Intervention Team was developed in Memphis Tennessee in 1988 under the leadership of Lt. Sam Cochran. Cochran partnered with members of the National Association Mental Illness, local universities, and local mental health providers to develop training for law enforcement.

(CIT) Crisis Intervention Team Training now exists in many communities across the United States. While the training was originally developed for law enforcement, it has been expanded to include dispatch, EMTs, other first responders, and criminal justice professionals.

Over the course of one week, this 40-hour training teaches participants about various types of mental illnesses, as well as active listening and de-escalation of crisis situations, and what mental health resources are available in the community.

The goal is to have a safe resolution of crisis situations involving individuals living with mental illness, and to divert these individuals away from criminal the criminal justice system and into treatment where recovery can begin.

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