OPEN LETTER IN RESPONSE TO THE PRESIDENT'S EXECUTIVE ORDER ON SAFE POLICING FOR SAFE COMMUNITIES
Now more than ever it is critical we all stay connected to develop, grow and sustain CIT programs across the country and abroad.
CIT International is pleased to be able to do their part in KEEPING THE CONNECTION by offering the 2020 CIT Conference as an online, virtual experience.
This is a time for so many more people to experience the CIT International conference to learn and network...LEARN MORE
We have been receiving inquiries from CIT programs across the country about CIT International’s recommendations regarding the continuation of CIT training during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our simple answer is to follow public health guidelines for your state and community, which therefore may mean postponing CIT training until it is safe to proceed.
We appreciate the desire to expand the number of CIT trained officers, however conducting in-person training could put officers, training staff and community partners at increased risk for infection. Even if the number of officers in training classes is decreased and/or the size of classrooms increased to allow for 6+ feet of social distancing during class, other elements of the training day (e.g., lines for the restroom, coffee and other activities during breaks) might inadvertently put individuals at risk. Thus, it will be critical that safety precautions based on local conditions are carefully followed.
Some programs have considered putting their entire 40-hour training week online or offering classroom instruction online and putting off scenario training until a time when it can be safely done with no social distancing. We believe CIT training is best done as a one-week in person intensive/immersive experience. Thus, we would advise against putting part or all the training online or breaking the content into segments over a longer period. Agencies that have grants to provide CIT training may want to reach out to funders to request extensions so that training can be provided with fidelity when it is safe to do so.
We understand the desire to provide training opportunities to support improved response to individuals experiencing mental health crisis during the pandemic. We encourage agencies to explore mental health related training content that is appropriate for online delivery. This may include CIT in-service training on specific behavioral health topics, basic mental health awareness training, and suicide prevention training.
CIT International shares your frustration during this uncertain time. We want to remind you that CIT is more than just a training program, and that the time and dedication each of you have spent building community based CIT programs was well worth it as we ride out the COVID 19 pandemic together. The importance of CIT programs being “more than just training” is highlighted now as we share resources and support one another. CIT International is here to support you as you work to keep your communities safe while maintaining the capacity and integrity of your CIT program.
We look forward to seeing you virtually at our conference in August!
CIT International, Inc. is a nonprofit membership organization whose primary purpose is to facilitate understanding, development, and implementation of Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) programs throughout the U.S. and worldwide in order to promote and support collaborative efforts to create and sustain more effective interactions among law enforcement, mental health care providers, individuals with mental illnesses, their families, and communities and to reduce the stigma of mental illness.
CIT International works to accomplish this purpose by:
INTERESTED IN PARTNERING WITH CIT INTERNATIONAL FOR A CONFERENCE IN YOUR COMMUNITY?
If you and your community are interested in partnering with CIT International to bring our conference to your city or state please let us know. We have an application process for selecting communities. Please click APPLICATION or contact Michele Saunders at firstname.lastname@example.org
CIT International, Inc. aspires to be a leader in promoting safe and humane responses to those experiencing a mental health crisis.
To promote community collaboration using the CIT Program to assist people living with mental illness and/or addiction who are in crisis.