Does law enforcement need more training for handling mental health related calls?

CHARLES CITY, Iowa – Law enforcement officers have to be ready to handle almost any kind of call that comes their way. Many of those calls involve dealing with people suffering from mental health issues.

Over the years, there has been a little more training for law enforcement to help them deal with someone trying to hurt themselves, or someone else due to a mental illness.

However, there is still not enough according to one north Iowa Sheriff’s Office.

Chief Deputy, Jeff Crooks of Floyd County, says there’s limited training at the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy. He says the topic is only growing, and that there should be more structure to the training.

“I think it has to be looked at because, there are cuts at the state level with mental health. There’s been so many cuts lately, that it’s falling more and more to us, as deputies and law enforcement. We’re going to just have to continually train for this, ’cause it’s out there,” says Chief Deputy Crooks.

Crooks says most folks would be surprised how many mental health related calls they get. The Floyd County Sheriff does send some deputies to Des Moines and Minneapolis for extra training to deal with these kinds of situations.

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