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CIT in Action – Vol. 1, No. 3

  1. Breaking Research from Kent State University Department of Sociology!
  2. Way To Go Ohio!
  3. NAMI New Jersey Law Enforcement Education Program
  4. In Our Own Voice and CIT – A Natural Partnership
  5. CIT in Johnson City, Tennessee!
  6. CIT Across the Atlantic!
  7. Eliminating Disparities: Multicultural Strategic Summit
  8. Useful Links

1.  Breaking Research from Kent State University Department of Sociology!

A major study on CIT conducted by theQuality of Life of People with Mental Illness research program of the Kent State University Sociology Department will be published in the February 2006 issue of Psychiatric Services. The study entitled The Effect of Crisis Intervention Team Training on Police Disposition of Mental Disturbance Calls was funded by the Ohio Department of Mental Health and the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services. Study findings include an increase in consumer transportation to mental health services, as well as an increase in officers with mental illness training responding to consumers in crisis. Congratulations to the principle investigator Mr. Christian Ritter Ph.D., the Project Director Jennifer L.S. Teller, Ph.D., Mark R. Munetz, Karen M. Gil, and the rest of the research team.

2. Way To Go Ohio!

Crisis Intervention Team Consultant Lt. Michael S. Woody (ret) has made it his mission to educate law enforcement on the benefits and practices of CIT. Mr. Woody’s extensive and comprehensive work in the state of Ohio has led to a growing number of sworn CIT officers, consumers getting the care they need, and communities becoming safer and more knowledgeable about mental illness. Currently there are 19 Ohio counties with 1,291 CIT trained officers. We commend Mr. Woody for his leadership and all of the sheriffs, deputies, corrections, mental health, and police officers throughout Ohio for their interest, enthusiasm, and commitment to this initiative.

3.  NAMI New Jersey Law Enforcement Education Program

Through her son’s negative interaction with law enforcement, Ms. Elaine Goodman recognized the need for better collaboration between mental health and law enforcement workers. Instead of accepting the system as is, Ms. Goodman became the embodiment of ‘the personal being political’. Ms. Goodman decided to work to transform policing in the state of New Jersey. Along with NAMI New Jersey, Ms. Goodman founded and coordinated a law enforcement education program. Ms. Goodman says this program is the, “result of NAMI expressing the need for training.”  Speaking about her accomplishments, she explains that the program has reached, “approximately 4000 on-duty New Jersey police and corrections officers, chiefs, judges, court personnel, probation officers and dispatchers at minimal cost”. It is because of the passion and determination of Ms. Goodman and others like her that CIT and other specialized police programs continue to thrive and education becomes available to all who need it. Stay tuned for more on this story! For more information about this program, please see the NAMI New Jersey website at:

4.  In Our Own Voice and CIT – A Natural Partnership

The NAMI Program- "In Our Own Voice: Living with Mental Illness," is a recovery education presentation given by trained presenters designed to give a personal voice to mental illness. Many CIT officers and coordinators feel that hearing the personal stories of consumers betters their training and enhances their understanding of people with mental illnesses. With 37 states and 2000 trained presenters, In Our Own Voice (IIOV) is an extremely valuable resource for those in law enforcement and criminal justice. Trained IIOV presenters are eager to address your audience concerning the interaction between the police and persons with mental illnesses. If you would like to have a NAMI presenter come to your training or education sessions, or if you would like more information, please contact the IOOV National Director, April A. Suhar at or (703)516.7226. For more on this program, please visit their website:

5.  CIT in Johnson City, Tennessee!

Mr. Bud Williams, the CIT Coordinator of the Johnson City Police Department is pleased to announce that its first CIT School is ready to open its doors! The first session will be held from January 16-20, 2006. This is Peace Officer Standards and Training (P.O.S.T.) Commission certified 45 hour school. This school was established through the collaboration of the Johnson City police department, NAMI Washington County, Frontier Health, and the Tennessee mental health consumers association. Mr. Williams goes on to say that the mental health/law enforcement “system is in place for the consumer’s benefit”. His goal is to create a regional CIT program. For more information about the school or upcoming training sessions, please contact Mr. Bud Williams at

6.  CIT Across the Atlantic!

In Liverpool, England the Merseyside police department is the first agency to give firearms officers mental illness training. This training, provided by mental health care workers, teaches Merseyside officers the signs of mental illness, as well as de-escalation techniques. Mr. Stuart Kernohan, the acting assistant chief constable, recognizes the need for training to have both officers and consumers remain safe in crisis situations. “No other force in the country is doing this”, Kernohan says, “The whole point of firearms officers is to use the minimum force possible”. (The Liverpool Daily Echo, September 23, 2005, 6).

7. Eliminating Disparities: Multicultural Strategic Summit

Eliminating Disparities: A Multicultural Strategic Summit will be held on June 28 - July 2, 2006 at the NAMI Annual Convention in Washington, D.C. This Summit brings together multicultural mental health leaders from across the nation to address the lack of access to care and the disparities in treatment faced by multicultural communities. The Summit will feature policy and research briefings, plenary sessions and program tracks to address issues specific to African American, American Indian, Asian American and Latino/Hispanic communities. Nationally recognized consumer and family advocates, researchers, policymakers and providers will work together to offer a vision for change.

For more information contact us at or visit Scholarships will be available for consumer and family advocates.

8. Useful Links

The Ohio Criminal Justice Coordinating Center of Excellence (CJ/CCoE):
Established in May 2001 to promote jail diversion alternatives for people with mental illness throughout Ohio.

The Criminal Justice/Mental Health Consensus Project:
A repository of information about all aspects of jail diversion, reentry, and enhanced treatment for offenders with mental illness.

U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance:
Administers federal mental health courts program, provides resources and information for jail diversion, publications and reports, information about federal funding sources.

The National Gains Center:
Focused  on expanding access to community based services for adult's diagnosed with co-occurring mental illness and substance use disorders at all points of contact with the justice system.

Police Executive Research Forum (PERF):
Information about criminal justice and mental health, community policing and other relevant information).

The Reentry Policy Council:
Bipartisan recommendations for successful prisoner reentry practices. This comprehensive report is beneficial as it recommends reentry strategies that reduce the likelihood of recidivism.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA):
Administers federal jail diversion grant program, resource information, publications, and other helpful information about criminal justice and mental health.

Your Feedback and Information is Needed!

We are also eager to hear from you about news or stories we can include for future issues of CIT in Action. Send your comments or ideas to Bonnie Sultan,