The new collaborative program will start on July 1st.
Frederick, MD (KB) The Frederick City Police have launched a new collaborative program to better respond to the needs of the community. That’s according to Police Chief Jason Lando.
“I’m excited today to announce a program that we are calling the Frederick Police Crisis Car Program,” said Lando. “The Crisis Car is comprised of a three-person team; there’s going to be a Frederick police officer, a mental health professional from one of our partner agencies, Sheppard Pratt, and an EMT or a paramedic from the Frederick County Fire and Rescue.”
Chief Lando continued, “The purpose of the team and the purpose of the car is to respond anywhere in the City of Frederick where there is a mental health crisis or a person in need where we feel like having a uniform police officer as the primary responder would not yield the best outcome.”
Chief of Rehabilitation and Recovery Services at Sheppard Pratt, Scott Rose, said this program will not only be more effective, but cost-effective.
“This ‘traveling trifecta’ really is going to be able to give these residents in need what we all need when we’re in pain,” said Rose. “Be protected by law enforcement, be comforted by mobile crisis, and to be healed by EMS. And by the way, it’s going to be done in a way that’s actually going to save money, so the City of Frederick is going to be doing good and doing well.”
Frederick City Mayor Michael O’Connor said this is an important step for the city to take toward community policing.
“While we want and expect the public to call the police when they see something that concerns them, we recognize that in not all instances are the police, necessarily, the best first responder,” explained O’Connor.
Chief Lando said the goal of this program is to improve outcomes, decrease the need to use force, and mitigate the need to use the criminal justice system as a means for dealing with people in crisis.
The Frederick Police Department (FPD) Crisis Car program is a partnership between the FDP, Sheppard Pratt, the Mental Health Association of Frederick County, the City of Frederick Department of Housing & Human Services, and the Frederick County Health Department.
The program will start on July 1st, 2021.