Central Mississippi Residential Center's Crisis Stabilization Unit is about to start helping even more people. Through a grant, they have partnered with law enforcement and will now be able to assist people brought there by Lauderdale County Sheriff Deputies or Meridian Police Officers. Lauderdale County Chief Deputy Ward Calhoun says the medical team at the CSU will work with law enforcement to map out each person's care.
"Officers that are properly trained and have received a CIT certification will now be able to take a person that they believe is a harm to themselves or others and bring them to the Crisis Stabilization Unit for evaluation to make a determination whether they need to be committed through the court system, or whether they can spend a few days here and be stabilized and be released."
With officers dealing with mentally unstable people everyday, this will give them one more option when it comes deciding on how to resolve their situation in a positive way.
"Officers on the street, daily encounter individuals who may meet the criteria that we're looking for where they need to be taken care of. They need to be assessed to determine their status as far as their mental health."
CMRC Director Debbie Ferguson believes that the first of its kind partnership in Mississippi will keep people out of jail that don't need to be there and give them the help they need.
"So many of the mentally ill are inappropriately placed in jail because there aren't services for them. Something needs to happen. They need a safe environment. There aren't resources out there, and law enforcement is the last safety net."
Law Enforcement is expecting to be able to start bringing people to CMRC on May 1st.