CHICAGO, ILLINOIS- July 12th, 2021 -In a continued effort to “defund the police“. Chicago is now sending mental health clinicians to certain 911 emergency calls.
Instead of sending police to all 911 calls. Chicago has implemented a new program that will send mental health workers and paramedics to certain calls. This comes in response to calls to defund the police made last year. In an attempt to address the mental health concerns of certain individuals, Chicago hopes to tackle the approach to public safety a bit more broadly.
While it is still unknown how these mental health responders will impact the health and saftey of Chicago’s public, Alex Heaton. Mayor Lightfoot’s policy advisor for public safety said:
“We’re super excited,”
“This is a brand new workforce for the city, and it’s an exciting opportunity to use a public health approach for people likely to come in contact with the first responder system.”
The city hopes this program will be cheaper, and offer results rather than more trouble for individuals in need.