The program aims to provide alternatives to jail and costly and often overburdened hospital emergency rooms.
SAN MATEO COUNTY, CA — Less than a year after its launch, a San Mateo County pilot program that aims to help people in crisis is expanding.
Officials on Thursday announced that the county has secured an additional $500,000 from the state to fund the Community Wellness & Crisis Response Team (CWCRT) program.
The San Mateo Police Department has led the initiative, which also includes the Daly City, Redwood City and South San Francisco police departments.
The program aims to provide alternatives to jail and costly and often overburdened hospital emergency rooms for people suffering from mental crises.
“Ultimately, this additional expertise in the field significantly contributes to the safety of the communities we serve as well as responding law enforcement personnel,” San Mateo Police Chief Ed Barberini said in a statement.
“The impact the identified funding will have is beyond measure and is greatly appreciated.”
The funding will go toward augmenting the existing program and providing training for first responders when interacting with people who suffer from dementia.
Assembly Speaker pro Tem Kevin Mullin, who helped secured the funding, will present the check to San Mateo County and law enforcement officials at a press conference at 3:15 p.m. Tuesday (Oct. 25) at the Martin Luther King Jr. Center (725 Monte Diablo Ave.).
“I am proud of the work being done in San Mateo County to respond more effectively and appropriately to 9-1-1 calls involving those who are experiencing some form of mental health crisis,” Mullin said in a statement.
“I am extremely pleased that state funding will provide additional financial support for this critical pilot and allow for training so responders can effectively interact with those who have Alzheimer’s or dementia.”