Wednesday, December 9, 2015 2:30 pm ·  0 Comments
The Halton Regional Police Service has partnered with St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton to develop a Mobile Crisis Rapid Response Team (MCRRT). This new initiative adds a layer of additional police response to mental health calls and crisis intervention. Teams will consist of a registered Healthcare Professional coupled with a specially trained uniformed police officer. Two teams will join our rotating platoon shifts each day, and will be specifically available to respond to calls involving persons in crisis.
The four officers selected as part of this 1 year pilot project have a background in mental health response and have experience working with our C.O.A.S.T. program (Crisis Outreach and Support Team). The mental health workers are comprised of two registered nurses and two social workers who all have extensive previous mental health experience. The four teams are currently receiving further crisis intervention training with a focus on risk assessment, Safe Talk training, and Assist training. The teams need to know when to intervene, how to deescalate and how to control a situation.
These Rapid Response Teams will be available and trained to defuse or deescalate crisis situations, advocate for the person and families in crisis, ensure mental health assessments are completed and will be better equipped to provide resources, help and support for everyone involved.
The teams will work seven days a week and will be dispatched to mental health calls throughout the Region of Halton.
“Front line officers are responding to mental health crisis calls on an increasing basis. Our new Mobile Crisis Rapid Response Teams will enhance our ability to deliver specialized services to people in those circumstances. Partnering with healthcare professionals is a progressive approach to providing timely and quality service to those struggling with mental health. “ Deputy Chief Duraiappah.
The Mobile Crisis Rapid Response Teams will began patrols on Monday December 7, 2015.
As police officers are increasingly the first point of contact for persons in crisis, the deployment of highly trained officers with the support of expert mental health workers is a large step in improving the interaction and relationship between police and people living with mental health challenges.