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City of Longview, Community Policing Crisis Intervention Team

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Awardee County
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $292,000)

In 2021, the city of Longview began a mental health field response program within the Longview Police Department.  The program included 4 mental health practitioners (MHPs).  Longview Police Department sought qualified organizations through a request for qualifications process in April/May 2021.  Columbia Wellness, a community behavioral health organization certified to provide services under WAC 246-341, was selected.   Two (city funded) mental health professionals (MHPs) began working out of the Longview Police Department main station in August 2021.  In addition, a third MHP supervisor (Washington Association of Police Chiefs [WASPC] funded position) began working out of the LPD station at the same time.  A fourth MHP (WASPC funded position) works out of the Kelso Police Department and assists individuals in crisis through Cowlitz County.  The MHPs in this program respond to calls where individuals are in crisis. 

Through the FY 2022 Byrne discretionary funding of $292,000, the city of Longview plans to expand this program and add two Behavioral Health Intervention Specialists to work in the Longview Police Department's Behavioral Health Unit (BHU) for an 18 month period of time.  

Through this program, MHPs and Behavioral Health Intervention Specialists provide immediate triage and access to cognitive and behavioral health resources in our county. Field response provides a safe environment for mental health clients who are experiencing a crisis.  BHU resources provide emergency responders with additional options to divert individuals to behavioral health resources as an alternative to incarceration which have not been readily available in the past.  These resource include outpatient mental health services, respite care, primary care clinics and other support services.  In addition to responding with officers to calls, the Behavioral Health Intervention Specialists will have access to view police calls for service and self-deploy in pairs to dispatched events involving community members suffering from mental illness crises.

Date Created: July 26, 2022