The Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) program is a community partnership working with mental health consumers, family members, service providers, and other related groups and resources. In Mecklenburg County the program is coordinated through Area Mental Health and is in primary partnership with the Charlotte chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). The primary goal is to set a standard of excellence for law enforcement officers with respect to treatment of individuals with mental illness. This is done by establishing individual responsibility for each event and overall accountability for the results.
Law enforcement officers participating in this training are provided with essential information and basic skills designed to better prepare them to deal with mental health consumers, especially those who may be experiencing a crisis. Additionally, they will be part of a specialized team which can respond to a crisis at any time within the scope of their assigned duties and they will work with the community to resolve each situation in a manner that shows concern for the citizen's well being.
This unique and creative alliance was established for the purpose of developing a more intelligent, understandable, and safe approach to mental crisis events. The Crisis Intervention Team program is a community effort enjoining both law enforcement and the community together for common goals of safety, understanding, and service to mental health consumers and their families.
The CIT program provides an avenue for the development of community partnerships and the collaboration of working together for community interest of service and care. CIT recognizes a special population that deserves special care, treatment, and service. Incident reporting via an online application hosted by Area Mental Health will soon be available to CIT graduates to report interactions with consumers and track results relative to CIT programming.
To date 116 Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office staff members have graduated from the CIT training program. The training is offered quarterly and a specific number of training slots are awarded to the Sheriff’s Office in each offering.