After the killing of George Floyd, demands for law enforcement reform were shooting up each new day. Recently, several Los Angeles city council members proposed a new emergency-response model that highlights the use of expert mental health & substance abuse issues professionals rather than armed policemen in handling nonviolent emergency calls.
Los Angeles as a whole, as well as most parts of the country, is heavily relying on armed police officers for all kinds of non-violent emergencies, such as homelessness, mental health, and even for the COVID-19 related emergencies.
Reimagining Emergency Mental Health Responses
Mental health responses from policemen have at times led to further conflicts and in recent times led to excessive violence. Many cities and their mayors have come up with announcements stating that instead of armed policemen, trained & skilled professionals would respond to mental health emergency calls in the coming days.
The big question many have is: Why are the police armed responding to mental health at all?
The answer is sad but true—The budget cuts in social programs, therapy services, mental health service programs, and various other public programs related to mental health and drug abuse have resulted in an added burden on police officers to handle non-violent emergencies. I have spent over a year as a clinician riding along with LAPD and can tell you that a collaborative model does exist and can in fact be successful.
Rather than counseling and professional cure, mental health patients have to go through criminal and legal charges and proceedings. Homeless, suicidal, drug-addicted, or various mental health-affected patients have to face even more mental pressure resulting in violent and horrible situations.
Such notions have risen after thousands of protestors across the world came out on the streets decrying the physical and mental brutality of the police on mentally unstable, homeless, and abused people, especially those focused on Black Americans.
CAHOOTS: Crisis Intervention in Eugene & Springfield
CAHOOTS & their methodologies are being discussed with a hope around the country. The Crisis Assistance Helping Out On The Streets deals with a range of mental health-related situations, which include conflicts, welfare examinations, substance abuse, suicide threats, and more. By completely relying on de-escalation & harmless techniques, CAHOOTS teams are not police officers and do not carry any kind of weapon.
The training and the tools used to ensure a non-violent resolution of a mental crisis has inspired many cities and their people-in-power to look beyond police officers in handling a mental crisis.
Taking Care of Yourself in the First Place
Mental health issues are not to be taken lightly at any cost. With the skyrocketing number of patients experiencing these COVID-19 situations, mental health rises as a huge challenge for each and every citizen of this country and the world.
You have to make sure that you or your family don’t end up with mental health problems in the first place. You can contact me online through my contact page, Instagram page (@richardlistens), or phone number to discuss any kind of mental issue that you, your family, or your friends are going through.
From health care professionals to athletes, from individuals to families, I have helped people conquer their Depression, Relationship Issues, Stress, Anxiety, and various other mental health problems through somatic, performance, and an empowerment-based treatment focus. As a response to this necessity, I’m offering a free 30-minute consultation call to discuss your specific needs.