Crisis Intervention Team Information
Law enforcement agencies may be eligible for reimbursement of overtime expenses incurred as a result of CIT training. Please see our application to find out if you’re eligible.
- Not a special “program” or “unit”
- Saves money and manpower
- Reduces officer injuries reduces litigation
- Can be implemented at low cost
- Increases public trust and satisfaction with police services
- Provides general knowledge beneficial to officers in managing a wide range of crisis situations.
CABLE Training Partners
Special Training for Special Circumstances
Over the past 20 years, significant changes within our mental health system have had far reaching effects. While the movement of persons with mental illness from institutions to the community has been a positive change for most people with psychiatric disabilities, some of the most severely mentally ill have slipped through the cracks.
Left untreated, the sometimes irrational or dangerous behavior engaged by some individuals with mental illness makes it necessary for public safety personnel to respond.
The goal of the Crisis Intervention Team model, described as a best-practice model by the Police Executive Research Forum, is safety: for the community, the law enforcement officer and the person in crisis.
Not only does the program promote safety for all involved, it also links the person in crisis to services in the community whenever possible.
The Connecticut Alliance to Benefit Law Enforcement has delivered high quality, state-of-the-art Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) patrol specialist training to police officers across the state since 2003.
- CIT is specially designed for the patrol officer—the first responder.
- The training is delivered and supervised by POST certified instructors; officers receive POST credits for the training.
The Crisis Intervention Team Model in CT video
How It Works
Officers are selected from a list of volunteers from the patrol division and selection is organized to train enough officers to cover each shift.
Candidates are chosen based on their police skill, compassion, patience and the ability to think creatively.
Dispatchers, first line supervisors and management personnel should also take the training to ensure continuity and to develop a written CIT policy for their department.
One forty hour week of training covers:
- Mental illness and substance abuse
- The mental health system
- Safe de-escalation techniques
- Suicide by Cop
- Suicide assessment and prevention
- Children’s mental health and trauma
- Mental health and the law
- Excited delirium
- Real life family and consumer perspectives on living with mental illness
After the basic one-week training:
- Officers are designated to handle all calls involving persons in psychiatric crisis
- Officers receive periodic updates and annual advanced training
Direct Benefits of Police CIT for Connecticut
- Mental health crisis response is immediate
- Consumers are provided care and access to mental health services
- Consumers have enough trust to request CIT officers in a crisis
- Use of force during crisis events will be decreased
- Underserved or ignored consumers are identified by officers
- Mental health consumers will volunteer to serve as integral participants in police training because trust is established
- Mental health professionals will call the police for assistance in a crisis (because they no longer fear the excessive use of force)
- Emergency room doctors seek input from officers on the patient’s level of impulse control and overall dangerousness
- Emergency commitment population will decrease as easier access for mental health services is achieved
- Patient violence and use of restraints in the ER (emergency room) will be reduced due to the intervention of the CIT patrol and de-escalation of potentially volatile situations
- Mental health professionals will volunteer to lend expert instruction/supervision to CIT officers
- Law enforcement officers will be better trained and educated (by using verbal de-escalation techniques)
- There will be less officer injury during crisis events Officer recognition and positive publicity will increase in the community
- Officer “down time” is significantly reduced on a crisis event after being trained as a CIT officer
Director Walter J. Murphy, Memphis Police Department says:
CIT is about responsibility and accountability to the community, family members and consumers of mental health services. Special needs deserve special care. CIT promotes education, sensitivity, understanding and the building of community partnerships.”
- No charge for federal state or local public safety agencies in Connecticut.
- Fully funded by the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services
CABLE CIT Faculty
Madelon Baranoski, Ph.D; Inspector Kenneth Edwards, Jr., Office of Chief State’s Attorney; In Our Own Voice, National Alliance on Mental Illness; Lieutenant Ray Hasset, New Haven PD; Sara Locke, M.S.; Lieutenant Jeff Nixon, Waterford PD; Lieutenant Mark Poisson, Wethersfield PD; Louise C. Pyers, M.S.; Deputy Chief Marshal “Chip” Segar, New London PD; Elliot B. Spector, Esq., Spector Criminal Justice Training Network; Visiting Faculty for regional CIT trainings