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Celebrating over 25 Years of CIT

                    May 2015

Next Conference Chicago April 24-27 2016 Chicago IL


Portland Police negotiator describes two-hour crisis at Lloyd Center (Mall)

"A ... crisis in the heart of northeast Portland where nobody got hurt"


"A man armed with knives and threatening to hurt police caused quite a scene outside Portland's Lloyd Center mall on Monday night, and now we're hearing for the first time from the crisis negotiator who helped talk him down.

"A subject was calling from Lloyd Center saying he had knives and that he intended on stabbing the police," Officer Karl Klundt told Fox 12.

As part of the Enhanced Crisis Intervention Team, it's the kind of call Klundt gets more often than you may realize.  What's not so common is for the call to play out in public in front of hundreds, if not thousands, of people.

Klundt said one of the biggest weapons police have in a situation like that is time...
"One of the first things I was trying to figure out is why he was there... I want to engage him in conversation, I want to hear his story, I want to hear what his needs are," Klundt explained.  "He seemed very confused about why he was there. He talked about how he was feeling paranoid."

He was taken to the hospital for a mental health evaluation, and Klundt said he'll be following up with the man and one of his caretakers in the next few days to build relationship and trust.

In the end, the situation ended without any injuries, the kind of ending officers like Klundt can only hope for."

Read more and view video report:

from PoliceChief Magazine:
Unlock the Mystery of Mental Illness with CIT - A Community Approach 

to Officer Safety               

Donald Turnbaugh, Past President National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Pinellas County FL Chapter

CIT Board of Directors


Officer safety is of paramount importance to law enforcement leadership. It is embedded in the police culture at every level. Simply explained, the goal of every officer is to go home every day. When the unthinkable occurs, the last thing a chief wants to do is tell a family that the death of their loved one was preventable. As violence against police officers continues, concern for the safety of officers remains an ongoing responsibility and priority.


Concern for officer safety is more than just a cultural tenet or personal decision. Other reasons for developing a strategy regarding officer safety are that even the appearance of lack of leadership may open the door for legislators to step in if they believe local leadership failed. In addition, recurring incidents are red flags for scrutiny from outside investigative and oversight agencies.


Ensuring officer safety is also the chief's duty-one that carries with it considerable repercussions and liability if it is not performed effectively. That liability may be the result of a lack of knowledge or action, but it can be reduced if appropriate and adequate training is provided and directed at the prevention of serious incidents. A failure of preparation for perceived threats to officer safety may be cause for monetary liability or even an individual's removal from leadership.

No "Routine Calls"

Leadership needs to challenge responding officers to accept there is no such thing as a "routine call." With proper training and policies, that complacency is overridden by a confidence that results in competence.

One of the most unpredictable calls for service is one involving a person who is emotionally disturbed. Conventional training sessions, which focus on calls for crimes such as robbery, burglary, or altercations, are designed to prevent officers from getting caught off guard. However, if an officer responds to a call and determines that the subject is emotionally disturbed, conventional training can be inadequate. Fortunately, there is a specialized program designed for law enforcement officers and their interactions with persons with mental illness. It is the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) program.



May is Mental Health Month

Each year millions of Americans face the reality of living with a mental health condition. During the month of May, NAMI and the rest of the country are bringing awareness to mental illness. Each year we fight stigma, provide support, educate the public and advocate for equal care. Each year, the movement grows stronger. In 2013, President Obama proclaimed May as National Mental Health Awareness Month and brought the issue of mental health to the forefront of our nation's thoughts.

We believe that these issues are important to address year round, but highlighting these issues during May provides a time for people to come together and display the passion and strength of those working to improve the lives of the tens of millions of Americans affected by mental illness.


ONE PERSON'S STORY:  Terry Taggart, member of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, Pinellas County, Florida, has displayed the courage of a Champion to rise from the depths of jail to the heights of leadership as an outstanding NAMI advocate serving over twenty years. Terry realized she needed and sought help for some of her bizarre thoughts and actions; but, received treatment only after her arrest and incarceration for arson. Upon release and in treatment for bi-polar disorder, she has become an exemplary citizen and advocate. Amazingly, during all those years, she courageously continued to care for and raise her physically disabled son!

Recently, Terry received a letter from NAMI National which said:

"On behalf of the NAMI Board of Directors, it is my privilege to inform you that you have been selected as the Lionel Aldridge Champions Award for 2015.

 The Lionel Aldridge Champions Award recognizes an individual living with a mental illness who has exhibited courage, leadership and service on behalf of all people living with mental illness.  In selecting you for this award, the NAMI Board wants to recognize you for your exemplary advocacy work over the past 20 years.

 They applaud you for your work on support, education and advocacy program for people living with mental illness, the police and legislators.


The award will be presented at our 2015 National Convention, scheduled for July 6-9 in San Francisco."

Legion honors public safety personnel
Rosemount, Minnesota

In 2014, Officer Danielle Waage worked tirelessly instituting a new police program, the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT), and became part of the Domestic Abuse Response Team (DART).  The position can be very difficult as she must work with the individuals one-on-one in situations that are sometimes very stressful.  She has shown her commitment to the job and these extra duties through follow up with the victims of domestic violence and crisis/mental health issues.  She has become very passionate about this type of work and expresses the importance of dealing with mental health issues by law enforcement.  Danielle has elevated the Rosemount Police Department to a higher standard with the hard work she has put into these programs. 

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 celebrating over 25 years of  CIT