Police Officers are increasingly being asked to respond to citizens in crisis. Some statistics indicate Law enforcement has seen a 25% increase in the amount of calls that are related to persons with mental and behavioral health issues. These numbers will continue to increase as more individuals in need of treatment are diverted into outpatient community based treatments instead of inpatient hospitalization.
Current trends indicate that our society, courts and political leaders expect law enforcement to adjust its response to mental illness. Officers should be prepared for changes mandated by Sheriffs and Chiefs in response to a changing mental health landscape in our communities.