Community awareness, access to recovery-oriented services and treatment, and law enforcement training are key to ensuring people with mental health and substance use disorders get needed services and stay out of the criminal justice system.
At our 2019 Nehemiah Action, with over 1,200 people, we pushed Tampa Police Department to train officers in Crisis Intervention Training. CIT is a 40-hour training that brings together law enforcement, mental health and addiction professionals, individuals who live with mental illness and/or addiction disorders, their families, and other advocates. It is an innovative first-responder model of police-based crisis intervention training to help persons with mental disorders and/or addictions access medical treatment rather than be placed in the criminal justice system due to illness-related behaviors. It promotes officer safety and safety of the individual in crisis.
Since then, they have begun training all officers in CIT.