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Tucson Police host largest Crisis Intervention Training Program in the country this week

Posted at 5:02 PM, Nov 30, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-30 19:14:53-05

Nine agencies are in Tucson for one of the oldest and largest Crisis Intervention Training Programs in the country. 

The Tucson Police Department is hosting training this week for over 40 law enforcement personnel from across Southern Arizona on how to handle a person in a mental health crisis. 

"What we are asking police officers to do today versus 10 years ago is completely different," said Sgt. Jason Winsky, a member of Tucson Police's Mental Health Support Team. "We are asking more of  police officers and deputies now than we used to."



Officers say the average number of calls they receive are mental health related. 

Sgt. Lawson with Marana Police says the second most important thing for law enforcement to know after learning to drive, is to communicate. 

"It is not always what you say, but how you say it, how you are standing, how you are presenting yourself, on top of that it is understanding where they are coming from and doing observations on them because communication is a two-way street, it's not just one way," said Sgt. Lawson. 



This program has been going on for more than 15 years. 

The class will complete training on Friday.