Calls for service involving people with mental illness can be among the most time-consuming and complex types of calls for law enforcement agencies. Police officers are often the first responders to mental health calls, which may require more resources than other calls for service. These calls also necessitate increased awareness of the safety of both responders and people in crisis. To improve the outcomes of interactions between police and people with mental illness, many law enforcement agencies have adopted Police-Mental Health Collaboration (PMHC) programs, which are collaborative partnerships among law enforcement agencies, mental health providers, and community-based organizations.
Since 2012, Blue Courage, LLC has offered innovative leadership development training to all levels of law enforcement, encouraging integrity, courage, and character while meeting the demands of 21st century policing. The philosophy of Blue Courage motivates law enforcement officers to develop the right mindset and skillset to perform their duties in a manner that also safeguards their own health and wellbeing, such as building resilience and recommitting to the nobility of policing.
In the National Gang Intelligence Center’s 2015 survey of federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement, more than half of respondents reported that street gang membership and gang-related crime had increased in their jurisdictions over the past two years. Faced with increases in gang-related incidents, many law enforcement agencies are seeking advanced, robust methods for identifying, investigating, and addressing the prevalence of gangs operating within certain geographic areas.
The United States incarcerates more individuals per capita than any other country in the world. With an expansive justice system consisting of federal, state, and local bodies collecting different metrics and using different performance measurements, it is difficult to imagine a standardized process for collection and assessment of data, even though it would allow for improved identification of systemic justice issues and sentencing disparities. Without the ability to compare performance and identify trends at all levels of the system, injustices may become more prevalent and become accepted as the status quo.