ARIZONA NEWS

Mesa Police Department takes new approach to mental health calls

Jun 7, 2019, 4:55 AM
The Mesa Police Department's crisis response team now has a licensed clinical social worker respond...
The Mesa Police Department's crisis response team now has a licensed clinical social worker responding to calls for service related to mental health issues. (Mesa Police Department Photo)
(Mesa Police Department Photo)

PHOENIX — The Mesa Police Department is taking a new approach to address mental health.

Its crisis response team now has a licensed clinical social worker responding to calls for service along with officers. It’s part of their new Mental Health Co-Responder pilot program.

“We have eight detectives on our crisis response team, and what we provide to the community can be limited,” said Detective Brandi George, a member of the crisis response team. “By bringing a clinician on board, it just expands our resources.”

Since April, detectives with the crisis response team have been working alongside Jenenne Redd, a licensed clinician social worker with Crisis Preparation and Recovery, a behavioral health provider.

“We take her out to the scene, we introduce ourselves and basically stand by while Jenenne talks to them through all of the things that they’re going through and then helps guide them through treatment,” George said.

Redd said she wears a vest for safety and a big patch that says counselor.

“We definitely wanted me to be identified and stand out differently than the police officers, and generally I see a positive response,” she said.

Over the last few months, she has helped with a wide range of calls, including people who are feeling suicidal or homicidal.

Redd was brought on board after the Mesa Police Department started seeing an increase in mental health crisis calls.

Last year, the department received 7,044 calls for services related to mental health issues. That’s up from 4,419 in 2015.

“Bringing Jenenne in enables us to have sometimes hours talking with these people with no interruption to get a better basis of where they are and where they want to be … and then getting them the help that they need,” George said.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Facebook photo/City of Phoenix, AZ USA)...
KTAR.com

Weekend wrap-up: Here are the biggest Arizona stories from Nov. 26-28

Phoenix on Sunday having its first sub-50 degree low since March is among the biggest Arizona stories of the weekend.
23 hours ago
(Pexels Photo)...
KTAR.com

Phoenix temperature hits sub-50 for the first time since spring

Turn the heater on and get those fuzzy socks out-- Winter is approaching as some Valley residents saw some chilly temperatures Sunday morning.
23 hours ago
(Facebook File Photo/Phoenix Police Department)...
KTAR.com

Phoenix police investigating death of woman following single-vehicle car crash

Phoenix police are investigating the death of a 21-year-old woman following a single-vehicle car accident early Sunday, authorities said.
23 hours ago
Syringes with the vaccine Comirnaty of Pfizer against the coronavirus and the COVID-19 disease stan...
KTAR.com

Arizona reports 2,274 new COVID-19 cases, 5 deaths on Sunday

Arizona health officials on Sunday reported 2,274 new COVID-19 cases and five deaths.
23 hours ago
The 34th annual APS Electric Light Parade returns Saturday, Dec. 4 at 7 p.m. (APS Electric Light Pa...
KTAR.com

Electric Light Parade returns to central Phoenix on Saturday

The central Phoenix night will be lit up with holiday colors Saturday during the annual APS Electric Light Parade.
23 hours ago
(Over Easy Photo)...
KTAR.com

Tired of turkey? Here are some Valley spots for National French Toast Day

Tired of turkey? Besides being Thanksgiving, Thursday is also National French Toast Day. Here are some Valley spots that offer the breakfast delight.
23 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

(Facebook Photo/NHTSA)...
Sweet James

Upcoming holiday season is peak time for DUI arrests

The holiday season may be the most wonderful time of the year, but it’s also the most dangerous time of the year to be driving. That’s why it’s important to remember to call Sweet James Accident Attorneys if you’re injured or arrested because of a DUI accident.
...
PNC BANK

How your family can explore the Musical Instrument Museum

Whether you want to spend a day with family, do crafts with kids at home, or have an adult night out, the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix has options. As the world’s only global musical instrument museum, MIM offers interactive and immersive exhibits to foster an appreciation of different cultures and their instruments. “A visit […]
...
Schwartz Laser Eye Center

How to sharpen your vision with elective procedures

Imagine opening your eyes in the morning and being able to see clearly. You wouldn’t have to wait to put on glasses or contacts, and there would be no more blurry showers nor forgetting where your glasses are.
Mesa Police Department takes new approach to mental health calls