Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $250,000)
The City of Montgomery as well as the Montgomery Area Mental Health Authority and, the Alabama Department of Mental Health, have identified the need for crisis intervention in law enforcement. The City of Montgomery is committed to de-escalation training as identified in the Montgomery Thrive plan. The Montgomery Thrive Plan is based on citizen and stakeholder input on disparities that have been exacerbated due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The City of Montgomery has requested $250,000 to deploy training and de-escalation efforts that would result in equitable policing and access to justice for individuals with behavioral health conditions and disabilities. The goal of the program is to train law enforcement personnel and others to respond humanely to individuals with mental illness by referring individuals to the Montgomery Area Mental Health Authority Crisis Intervention Center to receive proper evaluation and treatment, rather than incarceration. The impact of this effort will strengthen community safety, reduce health disparities, and increase trust in law enforcement. The City will implement the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) National Training Program, consistent with training programs in the City of Mobile and Jefferson County Alabama. The training would consist of topics related to officer safety, mental health, community support, de-escalation, and advocacy. The training is expected to reach at least 250 sworn personnel across divisions including the Special Services and Patrol Divisions, as well as law enforcement and law enforcement mental health advocates in surrounding counties that are served by the Montgomery Area Mental Health Authority. Based on 2020 Census data the population of Montgomery Alabama is 200,567, with the demographics of the City being 31.5% White alone, 60.8% Black or African American alone, 0.2% American Indian and Alaska Native alone, 3.2% Asian Alone,2.9% two or more races, and 3.8% Hispanic or Latino alone, 29.9 The City of Montgomery has not received a Crisis Intervention Training grant funds previously if successful this will be the first.