Otago Daily Times

Men­tal health cri­sis teams planned

- Health · Mental Health · Society · Depression · Law Enforcement · Psychiatry · Health Conditions · Law · New York City · York · York City F.C. · New York County, NY · Bill de Blasio · Floyd · Minneapolis

NEW YORK: Men­tal health and cri­sis work­ers in New York City, in­stead of law en­force­ment of­fi­cers, will re­spond to emer­gency men­tal health calls un­der a pi­lot pro­gramme an­nounced yes­ter­day af­ter months of protests around the coun­try over po­lice bru­tal­ity.

The pro­gramme, set to be­gin in Fe­bru­ary, will in­volve new men­tal health teams from the Fire Depart­ment’s Emer­gency Med­i­cal Ser­vices unit and will tar­get two ‘‘high­need’’ neigh­bour­hoods, which were not iden­ti­fied.

‘‘For the first time in our city’s his­tory, health re­spon­ders will be the de­fault re­spon­ders for a per­son in cri­sis, mak­ing sure those strug­gling with men­tal ill­ness re­ceive the help they need,’’ Mayor Bill de Bla­sio said in a state­ment.

The move comes as New York and other large cities seek to re­form their po­lice de­part­ments af­ter the May death of Ge­orge Floyd in po­lice cus­tody in Min­neapo­lis and other in­ci­dents sparked na­tion­wide protests. — Reuters

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