In 2011, local police were dispatched to Phi Beta Kappa Hall at the
The National Model
Many Crisis Intervention Teams (CIT), including the Colonial Area CIT, are modeled after the first program in
CIT Programs create a more educated and compassionate response for those experiencing a mental health crisis and are a very important part of a
Development of Our Local Program
In 2005, a group consisting of the Colonial Community Corrections Criminal Justice Planner, local police departments, NAMI and Colonial Behavioral Health employees held a law enforcement training addressing CIT concepts. Although the training was well received and a worthy effort, the coming years would see very little progress towards the development of an actual CIT.
In December of 2011, Colonial Behavioral Health submitted a statement of need and application for a six month CIT planning grant from the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services to begin in January 2012. Colonial Behavioral Health was one of only six localities in
selected to receive grant funds. As a result of the planning grant, 11 law enforcement officers have been trained who will likely become core instructors equipped to train additional officers in the future. A planning group has been meeting on a regular basis with community stakeholders to include The Colonial Community Criminal Justice Board, Williamsburg NAMI, The College of William & Mary, City of Poquoson, County of James City, County of York, City of Williamsburg and the Williamsburg Community Health Foundation. Virginia
Though proud of the efforts and our accomplishments thus far, we still have a lot of work to do. The Colonial Area Crisis Intervention Team and its members will continue to be completely committed to our community, working with mental health consumers, family members and mental health advocates to set a standard of excellence for our officers with respect to treatment of individuals with mental illness.