I know firsthand the trauma and heartache of losing a loved one in the course of a mental health crisis. My dear husband, Peter, tragically took his own life after decades of battling mental illness. Since my election to the Board of Supervisors in 2009, I have championed for the implementation of a field-based response team approach to the mental health crisis in Sonoma County.
I am pleased to announce that my strong advocacy for this project has resulted in the institution of a Mobile Support Team which provides improved response to mental health crises in Sonoma County. The Mobile Support Team will assist individuals having behavioral emergencies stemming from drugs, alcohol, mental illness or other factors. The teams will utilize specially trained staff who will respond to urgent situations involving individuals with various non-violent behavioral problems.
Training for these teams will be critical. Sonoma County Mental Health, in partnership with the Sheriff’s Department, has completed ten Crisis Intervention Training Academies, reaching approximately 300 law enforcement personnel.
The Mobile Support Team represents real progress in our efforts to increase public safety and provide more positive outcomes for families and community members who have been confronted with mental health emergencies.