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Prince William County Co-Responder Unit

Prince William County, VA
Program Year: 2021

The Prince William County Co-Responder Unit is a joint collaborative effort between the Prince William County Police Department and Prince William County Community Services. It is comprised of three of police officers and three mental health clinicians who respond together as teams to calls for service involving individuals in crisis. Utilizing a team approach between the Police Department and Community Services allows us to meet the person in crisis in the community where they are most comfortable, feel secure and can maintain their dignity. The Unit utilizes crisis intervention techniques and other problem-solving skills to de-escalate situations and develop resolutions that are in the best interest of individuals in crisis as well as the community. In addition, the Unit has a proactive component where they conduct outreach requests and home visits involving 911 high-utilizers, other persons in varying degrees of crisis, and individuals the Unit believes would benefit from further contact. When conducting the outreach requests, the Co-Responder Unit follows up with the individual in crisis, family members and caregivers to reduce the likelihood of further crisis situations by offering the appropriate resources or community services to encourage treatment engagement. The goal of the Unit is to utilize de-escalation techniques and divert individuals in crisis away from emergency custody or arrest, as well as emergency rooms, when those options would otherwise be appropriate. By utilizing these skills, we hope to put individuals in crisis in touch with community resources and reduce the recidivism of police contact. If those two goals can be met, we will ultimately do what is best for the consumer and reduce the amount of time officers spend on these types of calls for service.

Ms. Delain Moyers
Police Planner