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Crisis Intervention Team Essay

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Chapter 5 of the James and Gilliland text describes a crisis intervention team (CIT) approach to dealing with crises of the mentally ill, many of whom are homeless or have entered unstable living situations since the Community Mental Health Act of 1963. The act brought changes that released many mentally ill people back into the community. Analyze the tools and resources that a CIT approach could offer in your own community if you were developing these resources. Analyze the benefits and potential obstacles of this approach if you were the ambassador to advocate locally for the concept.

Determining the amount of homeless individuals in any given area can be a difficult task and statistics very dependent on the source.   It has been estimated that in the Kansas City Metro Area there are from 750 to 1000 homeless people living on the streets and anywhere between 12,000 to 24,000 living in shelters and other temporary residences (City Data, n.d.).   Regardless of the statistics, mentally ill individuals make up a large number of the homeless and are now in more contact with the general public (James & Gilliland, 2013).   Due to the physical and fiscal limitations in establishing the required workforce and facilities to handle this growing problem crisis intervention teams (CIT) have been created.   The CIT program is proactive and preventative and is used to confront dangerous situations involving the mentally ill (James & Gilliland).   These situations can potentially be very dangerous, even life threatening, and put the mentally ill and the responding officers, public, and other response personnel in jeopardy (James & Gilliland).   The main goal of the CIT program is to increase public safety, protect the mentally ill and any responding personnel, and increase public awareness on mental health issues (James & Gilliland).

      CIT programs involve an alliance between a variety of groups which include hospitals, police departments and emergency personnel, mental...

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