Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Western NC leads the way in law enforcement officers' training who interface w/ citizens w/ mental health challenges

Yes, indeed: this is what is important.


Local officers trained in mental illness awareness

Fourteen law enforcement officers from the Franklin Police Department and the Macon County Sheriff’s Office attended a workshop, “Recognizing the Warning Signs of Mental Illness and Strategies for Effectively Dealing with it”.

The workshop was held at Southwestern Community College Public Safety Training Complex on Oct. 1 & 2. This training was made possible through a partnership between Smoky Mountain Center, the Mental Health Association in North Carolina, Southwestern Community College, and NAMI Appalachian South (National Alliance on Mental Illness); and was partially funded by a grant from Macon County Community Foundation.

The training provided information to assist with recognition of mental illness and tactics to use in effectively and safely deal with individuals suffering from major mental illness. Members from Smoky Mountain Center provided information on resources and services available in Macon County. NAMI Appalachian South gave a presentation, “In Our Own Voice: Living with Mental Illness”, to help understand persons with mental illness.

This is a first step by this partnership in bringing CIT training to law enforcement officers in Macon and surrounding counties. The CIT (Crisis Intervention Team) program is a nationally recognized training program developed by the Memphis Police Department in 1988.This unique and creative program was established for the purpose of developing a more intelligent, understandable, and safe approach when an officer is called upon to deal face-to-face with the complex issues of a mental illness crisis.



A presentation by consumers that creates awareness about what is involved in recovery from mental illness.

(cut and paste)


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