Program Pairs Counselors With Cops to Better Handle Mental Health Calls

Police officers, paramedics and social workers will team up to better respond to mental health emergencies as part of a pilot program starting Monday in southern Dallas.The initiative will pair psychiatric social workers from Parkland Memorial Hospital with paramedics from Dallas Fire-Rescue and South Central patrol officers dispatched to 911 calls involving behavioral health issues."When these mental health calls come in, we have a hodgepodge of responders," Dallas Fire-Rescue Assistant Chief Daniel Salazar said. "We have paramedics; we have police officers that are not necessarily specially trained to deal with mental health emergencies."  Continue reading...

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