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sb247

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In the hospital you have many more interactions. I'd argue that the vast majority are handled very well, with no physical altercation, through de-escalation strategies. Which, is why we need more MH pros either responding to these types of situations, or embedded with police. Police, especially as they become militarized, treat most every situation as a hammer/nail issue. We need other tools in our response toolbox.
I’m 100% for embedded mental health. Totally on your team there

i find it ludicrous to assume you can just send the cops home if you hire enough mental health people which is what some of these proposals imply
 
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WisNeuro

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I’m 100% for embedded mental health. Totally on your team there

i find it ludicrous to assume you can just send the cops home if you hire enough mental health people which is what some of these proposals imply
To be fair, the zero cops policies are definitely the exception, the vast majority of candidates who have put forward proposals have been advocating reform, not abolishment. It just happens to be a good soundbite that Trump and the GOP like trotting out there to rile up the voters. As in that Wallace interview, where he got called out on it and doubled down when proven wrong.
 

beginner2011

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To be fair, the zero cops policies are definitely the exception, the vast majority of candidates who have put forward proposals have been advocating reform, not abolishment. It just happens to be a good soundbite that Trump and the GOP like trotting out there to rile up the voters. As in that Wallace interview, where he got called out on it and doubled down when proven wrong.
Are there any legitimate candidates that are proposing zero cops policies? Sounds like a straw man to me. Mostly seems like bad faith or out of the loop contrarians who are making the argument against zero cop policies.
 
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WisNeuro

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Are there any legitimate candidates that are proposing zero cops policies? Sounds like a straw man to me. Mostly seems like bad faith or out of the loop contrarians who are making the argument against zero cop policies.
Not many, no. Even so, these decisions cannot be made unilaterally. Even in Minneapolis, all the city council can do is make something a referendum on the ballot. Voters would still have to approve anything sweeping. Personally, in terms of the Minneapolis PD, they really should be disbanded, and built back from the ground up as that union refuses even minor reforms, and consistently causes multimillion dollar payouts in most recent years.
 

sb247

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Not many, no. Even so, these decisions cannot be made unilaterally. Even in Minneapolis, all the city council can do is make something a referendum on the ballot. Voters would still have to approve anything sweeping. Personally, in terms of the Minneapolis PD, they really should be disbanded, and built back from the ground up as that union refuses even minor reforms, and consistently causes multimillion dollar payouts in most recent years.
I apologize for my imprecise language. I agree that zero cops is a silly fringe notion, I’m more specifically criticizing the notion that we can still enforce laws by replacing cops with mental health, They should be emdedded to try and mitigate escalation, not replace
 
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WisNeuro

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I apologize for my imprecise language. I agree that zero cops is a silly fringe notion, I’m more specifically criticizing the notion that we can still enforce laws by replacing cops with mental health, They should be emdedded to try and mitigate escalation, not replace
Most of the actual detailed proposals I've seen have not advocated for complete replacement. Rather a reallocation of funds to hire people with MH training for certain calls, and for responders to answer calls that we really don't need police at anyway. Even the calls for an abolishment seem to be more aimed at dissolving the current structure due to the hardline stances of unions, and building something back up that also includes an armed police force in some manner.
 

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WisNeuro....that is far too reasonable (and necessary). It's much easier to claim you are either a supporter of the police or you are an abolitionist. As for where Psych fits in, I think it is in screening, ongoing training, and most importantly....RESEARCH. Whether it be gun related (which is nearly impossible to fund w federal $'s), profiling related, etc.
 
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Hi everyone,

I'm sure that you've all heard about the proposals going around for "defund the police" or "community policing," which to my understanding would involve shifting some of the traditional responsibilities of police to mental health workers. I am wondering how we all feel about that. Although I think that this is a very good idea in many ways, I am concerned about the implications it could have for our profession as I feel like we already expected to be a panacea for violent behavior. What do you guys think?

I'm also aware that most people seem to be mentioning social workers specifically, not psychologists, although I have seen therapists mentioned. So I'm not sure to what extent it would impact psychologists specifically.

(Btw, to limit the likelihood of this thread turning into a dumpster fire, please keep your thoughts focused as much as possible on how this would impact mental health workers and not thoughts on these proposals in general.)
I resigned from Law Enforcement on May 1st with lofty goals of becoming a psychologist. The agency that I worked for was fairly small (less than 100). They were very proactive in several ways to include this very issue. I think that there are two things that come into play here. 1. LEO Mental health. 2. Integrating MHP’s into crisis calls. We stood up a peer counseling group that I ended up being in charge of. We were bound by confidentially and received training in order to be able to identify LEO’s that were in a mental health crisis and be able to direct them to the appropriate higher level of care. 2. Every LEO in the county received a 40 hour training in crisis management and we started integrating counselors on crisis calls. When we arrived at a call and determined that it was a mental health crisis we would have a crisis intervention team dispatched to our location to assist. I will tell you that this beats the option of cuffing/stuffing an individual into the back of a squad car for a very unpleasant ride to the hospital, where inevitably they would commit some type of crime.
I believe strongly that both of these things are incredibly important, there is a stark contrast between the officers who have received the crisis training and the ones that have not. I also strongly believe that every police department should stand up a similar program and many of them are. Furthermore I believe that it is imperative that agencies start looking really hard at their officers mental health. LEO’s deal with an incredible amount of trauma and their mental health can decline rapidly (hence why I am pursuing this line of work). I do not think that the current climate will change until officers are able to receive the appropriate care. There are currently a lot of barriers that prevent officers from seeking help from a MHP and until that changes sadly I think there will continue to be cases similar to what has happened in the recent past. I am very passionate about both of these things and I hope that I am able to reach my goals in order to make a difference in both of these issues.
 
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I resigned from Law Enforcement on May 1st with lofty goals of becoming a psychologist. The agency that I worked for was fairly small (less than 100). They were very proactive in several ways to include this very issue. I think that there are two things that come into play here. 1. LEO Mental health. 2. Integrating MHP’s into crisis calls. We stood up a peer counseling group that I ended up being in charge of. We were bound by confidentially and received training in order to be able to identify LEO’s that were in a mental health crisis and be able to direct them to the appropriate higher level of care. 2. Every LEO in the county received a 40 hour training in crisis management and we started integrating counselors on crisis calls. When we arrived at a call and determined that it was a mental health crisis we would have a crisis intervention team dispatched to our location to assist. I will tell you that this beats the option of cuffing/stuffing an individual into the back of a squad car for a very unpleasant ride to the hospital, where inevitably they would commit some type of crime.
I believe strongly that both of these things are incredibly important, there is a stark contrast between the officers who have received the crisis training and the ones that have not. I also strongly believe that every police department should stand up a similar program and many of them are. Furthermore I believe that it is imperative that agencies start looking really hard at their officers mental health. LEO’s deal with an incredible amount of trauma and their mental health can decline rapidly (hence why I am pursuing this line of work). I do not think that the current climate will change until officers are able to receive the appropriate care. There are currently a lot of barriers that prevent officers from seeking help from a MHP and until that changes sadly I think there will continue to be cases similar to what has happened in the recent past. I am very passionate about both of these things and I hope that I am able to reach my goals in order to make a difference in both of these issues.
I should add as a caveat. The crisis intervention team would only respond IF the person in crisis agreed to it. So ultimately if they did not want the crisis intervention team involved they would not respond. They would also not respond to a situation that was not safe obviously.
 

Therapist4Chnge

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There are currently a lot of barriers that prevent officers from seeking help from a MHP and until that changes sadly I think there will continue to be cases similar to what has happened in the recent past.
Including the patient population being *very* averse and avoidant of mental health treatment. I eval injured LEOs with some frequency (primarily concussions, but also more significant neurologic problems) and the culture of law enforcement can be quite challenging in regard to healthcare in general, but especially with mental health.

I have a family friend who was in law enforcement and he went back to be a counselor. Even with years of experience as an LEO and working with the various LEO unions, he still complains about getting consistent participation let alone solid buy-in from officers.

How do we bridge that gap? I don't mean this to just the OP, as this is a multi-factorial problem, I just thought he brought up a good point.
 

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Including the patient population being *very* averse and avoidant of mental health treatment. I eval injured LEOs with some frequency (primarily concussions, but also more significant neurologic problems) and the culture of law enforcement can be quite challenging in regard to healthcare in general, but especially with mental health.

I have a family friend who was in law enforcement and he went back to be a counselor. Even with years of experience as an LEO and working with the various LEO unions, he still complains about getting consistent participation let alone solid buy-in from officers.

How do we bridge that gap? I don't mean this to just the OP, as this is a multi-factorial problem, I just thought he brought up a good point.
I wonder how much of that avoidance/closing off is related to concerns over potential loss of firearms license? I imagine there is a fear that if you get a MH diagnosis that could potentially be reported to whatever agency in the state oversees license and without it it’s pretty difficult to be an LEO. Challenging situation to want officers to seek help that could also potentially stop a career (even if the intention is to provide help and not FFD evaluation). Definitely a cultural barrier that needs to be addressed.
 
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Sanman

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I wonder how much of that avoidance/closing off is related to concerns over potential loss of firearms license? I imagine there is a fear that if you get a MH diagnosis that could potentially be reported to whatever agency in the state oversees license and without it it’s pretty difficult to be an LEO. Challenging situation to want officers to seek help that could also potentially stop a career (even if the intention is to provide help and not FFD evaluation). Definitely a cultural barrier that needs to be addressed.

When I was a doing cash only PP, LEO and military were a consistent source of clients due wanting to get treatment without impacting their job and pension benefits. It is a real concern and a barrier that needs to be addressed.
 
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Including the patient population being *very* averse and avoidant of mental health treatment. I eval injured LEOs with some frequency (primarily concussions, but also more significant neurologic problems) and the culture of law enforcement can be quite challenging in regard to healthcare in general, but especially with mental health.

I have a family friend who was in law enforcement and he went back to be a counselor. Even with years of experience as an LEO and working with the various LEO unions, he still complains about getting consistent participation let alone solid buy-in from officers.

How do we bridge that gap? I don't mean this to just the OP, as this is a multi-factorial problem, I just thought he brought up a good point.
I think the only way to bridge the gap is through education and promoting overall mental health. If we can keep them healthy there is no reason for them to lose their right to carry.
 
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There are currently a lot of barriers that prevent officers from seeking help from a MHP and until that changes sadly I think there will continue to be cases similar to what has happened in the recent past.
I wonder if one of the barriers is the hours officers work. How many MHP's can (will?) accommodate second or third shift, will be flexible with not charging for last minute cancels/no shows due to on the job emergencies, or can accommodate a rotating schedule in which days off change constantly? I imagine this barrier exists with other fields that would benefit from mental health support.
 

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I wonder if one of the barriers is the hours officers work. How many MHP's can (will?) accommodate second or third shift, will be flexible with not charging for last minute cancels/no shows due to on the job emergencies, or can accommodate a rotating schedule in which days off change constantly? I imagine this barrier exists with other fields that would benefit from mental health support.
Eh, there are plenty of mental health professionals who do shift work in crisis centers, etc.
 

sb247

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I wonder how much of that avoidance/closing off is related to concerns over potential loss of firearms license? I imagine there is a fear that if you get a MH diagnosis that could potentially be reported to whatever agency in the state oversees license and without it it’s pretty difficult to be an LEO. Challenging situation to want officers to seek help that could also potentially stop a career (even if the intention is to provide help and not FFD evaluation). Definitely a cultural barrier that needs to be addressed.
I literallt know people who refuse to discuss mental health with doctors for that reason
 

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Just saw this on Twitter, apparently cops responded to a suicidal person call and ended up shooting themselves and a dog. The suicidal person was armed with a SCISSORS. Surely we can do better?

 
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WisNeuro

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Hey, we all know how dangerous scissors are. We've been told not to even run with them since we were children. Of course those officers feared for their lives and needed to resort to deadly force. I just hope they got back to the precinct in time for finger painting.
 

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Hey, we all know how dangerous scissors are. We've been told not to even run with them since we were children. Of course those officers feared for their lives and needed to resort to deadly force. I just hope they got back to the precinct in time for finger painting.
What were they even shooting at? The suicidal dude? The dog? The other scary armed police officers? (well obviously, they shot one)
 

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It is a complicated situation. Take someone with a high school education, give them limited training which is less than 1/8th of the rest of the developed world. Create case law that legally allows law enforcement agencies to refuse to hire individuals with above average IQs. Create a narrative that police work is highly dangerous, ignoring the fact that LEO work is safer than lawncare. Sell the previous idea to people with average or low average IQs. Now overpay them, offer disability payments for highly treatable conditions, and given them a huge pension. Then make them bullet proof against any law suits.

Now reduce mental healthcare spending for those in need.

Not surprising what happens.
 

sb247

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It is a complicated situation. Take someone with a high school education, give them limited training which is less than 1/8th of the rest of the developed world. Create case law that legally allows law enforcement agencies to refuse to hire individuals with above average IQs. Create a narrative that police work is highly dangerous, ignoring the fact that LEO work is safer than lawncare. Sell the previous idea to people with average or low average IQs. Now overpay them, offer disability payments for highly treatable conditions, and given them a huge pension. Then make them bullet proof against any law suits.

Now reduce mental healthcare spending for those in need.

Not surprising what happens.
Or it could be simpler where you make two guys walk into a house with a crazed suicidal guy and a rotwaller...
 
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WisNeuro

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Or it could be simpler where you make two guys walk into a house with a crazed suicidal guy and a rotwaller...
Our hospital somehow manages to deal with countless suicidal, psychotic, and aggressive patients in the several years I've been here without killing one yet. It's almost like people who are trained to deal with MH issues, should handle MH issues. And when you have poorly trained people with legal immunity respond to situations, they will quickly go to the "easy" solution of deadly force much more often than they should in such situations.
 
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cara susanna

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On the flip side, we've had police officers around here refuse to enter the dwelling of a suicidal person we called a welfare check on because "they could have a gun." And on one occasion that was after they made me, the mental health professional, get off of the phone with the person so they could contact the person via phone.
 
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sb247

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Our hospital somehow manages to deal with countless suicidal, psychotic, and aggressive patients in the several years I've been here without killing one yet. It's almost like people who are trained to deal with MH issues, should handle MH issues. And when you have poorly trained people with legal immunity respond to situations, they will quickly go to the "easy" solution of deadly force much more often than they should in such situations.
Or maybe by the time they get to you in a hospital they are in a controlled environment where you are pretty sure they don’t have a gun or a rottwaller...

i’m with you on occasionally going too fast to lethal force but our job and theirs are not the same
 
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WisNeuro

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Or maybe by the time they get to you in a hospital they are in a controlled environment where you are pretty sure they don’t have a gun or a rottwaller...

i’m with you on occasionally going too fast to lethal force but our job and theirs are not the same
No, our jobs are not the same, because I stick to what I am trained to do, and I actually have consequences for my actions. I believe police serve a function, but at the moment, it is overly broad, with them doing many things that they are ill-prepared to do. I'm fine with tearing it down and building it back up. Multi-disciplinary setup, get rid of structure which protects and shields psychopaths who damage public safety, get rid of bloated pensions that cripple local budgets.
 
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sb247

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No, our jobs are not the same, because I stick to what I am trained to do, and I actually have consequences for my actions. I believe police serve a function, but at the moment, it is overly broad, with them doing many things that they are ill-prepared to do. I'm fine with tearing it down and building it back up. Multi-disciplinary setup, get rid of structure which protects and shields psychopaths who damage public safety, get rid of bloated pensions that cripple local budgets.
I’m all for a great deal of that, none of that changes those guys aren’t automatically a—holes because we told them to walk into a situation with a crazy suicidal guy who has access to an unknown list of objects and a rottwaller. They got dealt a crappy hand, regardless of how well you think they played the cards (and they could have played it criminally poorly, I need to acknowledge that)
 
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WisNeuro

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I’m all for a great deal of that, none of that changes those guys aren’t automatically a—holes because we told them to walk into a situation with a crazy suicidal guy who has access to an unknown list of objects and a rottwaller. They got dealt a crappy hand, regardless of how well you think they played the cards (and they could have played it criminally poorly, I need to acknowledge that)
I'm willing to entertain the notion that these guys may have been victims of circumstance, but the sheer number of times this situation plays out similarly, guides me to go with the numbers. Also, I'm not sure that the correct nomenclature we use in MH with our suicidal patients is "crazy."
 

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Also, I'm not necessarily blaming the officers but the system that likely didn't provide them the proper training for this sort of situation. Like I said, surely we can do better.
 
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