Crisis Intervention Team
The Chandler Police Department Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) is specially trained Chandler Police officers and civilian employees committed to assisting persons with mental illnesses and other brain disorders. This collaboration includes local members of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), local mental health service providers, family members and law enforcement officers. The Chandler Police Department’s CIT program provides an avenue for the development of community partnerships and the collaboration for community service. The CIT program is designed to:
- Provide cooperative community partnerships of law enforcement, mental health service providers, consumers, families and advocates.
- Coordinate and enhance services to people with mental illness and/or substance abuse problems through law enforcement based Crisis Intervention Teams.
- Provide leadership to facilitate CIT programs and play an integral role in the design of training for the CIT officers, and
- Support success and continuous improvement of CIT.
The Chandler Police Department’s CIT Program was implemented in 2004 as a means to provide a more professional and humane response to individuals in serious mental health crisis. The program is based on the Memphis Model, which is the standard for similar programs nationwide. The Chandler Police Department is also a member of the East Valley CIT Program Collaboration.
CIT trains law enforcement officers to effectively and humanely interact with persons with mental illness. The CIT course is a 40-hour, five-day curriculum that is approved by the Arizona Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST) Council. It is comprised of both classroom instruction and practical exercises delivered by mental health professionals, other subject matter experts and CIT law enforcement instructors.
When a public safety situation occurs involving a person in psychiatric crisis, law enforcement officers will be the first responders. The officers are responsible for handling the incident in the most professional manner possible. CIT training provides officers with the tools to professionally and humanely interact with persons with mental illness. Often situations involving psychiatric crises are higher risk and may escalate quickly into a situation where use of force may be a necessity. CIT training provides officers with skills that can minimize risk to responding officers and the person in crisis and may prevent the need to use force all together.
It’s OK to ask for a CIT Officer
The CIT Program is a service to the community, so don’t be afraid to use it. If you find yourself in a situation where you need to call law enforcement to intervene with a person experiencing a mental health crisis, it’s okay to request a CIT officer.
Non-Emergency Number: (480) 782-4130
If you have questions please contact Community Resources Sergeant Greg Howarth who is the department’s CIT Coordinator/Arizona Peace Officer and Standards Training Board trainer and subject matter expert (SME):