Peer Response: After String Of Police-Involved Deaths, NYC public advocate reenvisions city responses to mental health crises

September 25, 2019

Disability Justice, NYLPI v. NYPD, News

New York’s Public Advocate Jumaane D. Williams released a comprehensive report this morning, reenvisioning the city’s response to mental health crises to involve a peer response model.

Following a shocking series of 911 calls about “emotionally distressed persons” that resulted in their police-involved deaths, Public Advocate Jumaane Williams is making a sweeping series of proposals to reduce the number of mental health crises in the city.

He is calling for the city to create a non-NYPD number that people can call to get immediate treatment for mental health crises, among other measures aimed at taking many such incidents out of the hands of law enforcement.

The Daily News covered the story in-depth, and you can read the full story here.

NYLPI’s Director of Disability Justice, Ruth Lowenkron, said: “We are enormously grateful that the Public Advocate has issued a report sounding the alarm about police killings of individuals experiencing mental health crises, and calling for complete reform. Mental health crises must be treated like the health issues they are, and be responded to by health care professionals and ‘peers’ who have experienced their own mental health crises — as is done in municipalities around the country.”

The full report is available at the Public Advocate’s website or available for download as a pdf here.

You can read a press release issued by Communities for Crisis Intervention Teams in New York City (CCITNYC), quoting Ruth, on the taskforce report.

 

 

 

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