I read with interest and agreement the article (Toronto cop opens up about mental health, June 29).
Before moving to P.E.I. several years ago I was employed by the Saskatoon Crisis Intervention Service. SCIS was funded by Social and Family Services, Northern and Indian Affairs and city police. Our staff consisted of social workers, psychiatric workers, nurses and counsellors.
A 24-hour, seven-days-a-week service was provided by workers responding on the phone, by a mobile unit or to client walk-ins. After hours and on weekends, we were mandated to do social and family services’ work such as emergency placements, apprehensions and emergency financial assistance. We carried police radios and pagers. If a call Initially went to city police and they assessed that it was a mental health or such issue, we were asked to assist. If the situation was potentially volatile the police would stay as back up. Otherwise, we were left to do that for which we were trained.
The police have enough challenges. This system worked.