For Immediate Release: 2/24/2016 2:05 pm
Worcester, MA (February 24, 2016) - More than two dozen Worcester Police officers, members of the City Manager’s Quality of Life Task Force the city’s Communications Department, along with officers from the UMass–Memorial Medical Center are participating in Crisis Intervention Team training at police headquarters this week. The program is funded by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Mental Health Jail Diversion Grant.
Training participants will receive 40 hours of training in techniques and best practices to de-escalate interactions with individuals in crisis, particularly people with mental illnesses. The goals of the training are to help officers and city officials to identify and safely respond to individuals with mental illness and “co-occurring” conditions such as homelessness, drug abuse, criminality, and victimization and to divert these individuals from the criminal justice system toward appropriate care and treatment. In addition, the training is in collaboration with the mental health care system and community partners to enhance officer’s knowledge of local resources.
The curriculum includes presentations and classroom instruction by: Mental Health (DMH)Forensic Services, The Office of the Worcester County District Attorney. Community Health Link, YOU, Inc., Genesis Club, C.A.C Counseling & Assessment Clinic of Worcester, UMass Memorial Medical Center, The Bridge of Central Massachusetts, Substance Free Worcester, WIN Worcester Intervention Network, Department of Children and Families, Autism Law Enforcement Education Coalition (ALEC) Central Mass Housing Alliance.
Members of the media are invited to attend a portion of the training on Friday, February 26, 2016 from 1:30 p.m.-2:00 p.m. at Worcester Police Headquarters. Interviews will include: City Manager Edward M. Augustus Jr., Worcester County District Attorney Joseph D. Early, Jr. and Deputy Chief Edward McGinn