KeepHealthCare.ORG – Officers take mental health training course
TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) – Cecelia Carter is a member of the Thomas M. Wernert Center. It’s a mental health recovery and support agency. The members helped officers from various departments understand what it’s like when you’re in a mental health crisis.
“I’m afraid. I’m scared. I’m hearing voices and the voices are loud. The police officers are trying to interact with me and I don’t know who to believe. So when you are in a mental health crisis your body physically does things too. You got hormones and you’re in a flight or fight situation,” said Cecelia Carter.
Eight officers are taking an intense 40 hour course. The crisis intervention training also known as CIT educates officers on mental health conditions and medications and introduces them to mental health resources.
“We just started a new tracking software program. In the last month we had over 50 calls resulted in some type of cit training,” said Toledo Police Lt. Brian Twining.
The training is an extra tool for officers like Cherokee Tabb to use when serving the community. Officer Tabb says a big portion of the training is verbal de-escalation skills.
“So I ask them what can I say? What can I do? How can I approach you so that you’re not afraid to lighten the anxiety and lighten the mood a little bit. So we both feel comfortable enough to tell me if they have some issues going on,” said TPD officer Cherokee Tabb.
The Toledo Police Department does CIT training four times a year.