SHEBOYGAN — Mental health workers will begin responding to calls with Sheboygan police officers to help individuals on the edge of crisis.
The Sheboygan Police Department and Sheboygan County Health and Human Services say the Co-Responder Pilot Program was developed "in response to gaps in service seen by both organizations."
The program has staff contracted by the county from Elevate Inc., within the police department. They have been training for the past four weeks and will begin taking calls on Monday, Nov. 20.
Police say the mental health workers will be available 16 hours a day, seven days a week.
The program will not replace the current Crisis Response Services in Sheboygan County. Instead, police say it is meant to reach people before they need crisis response.
"We recognize that navigating services related to mental health can be a difficult and frustrating experience," the Sheboygan Police Department and Sheboygan County Health and Human Services said in a statement. "We believe that having these workers out in the community will ease the process and lead to individuals having greater success getting connected to services that prevent them from needing to use an emergency room or ending up in the criminal justice system."
The program is funded through American Rescue Plan Act funds from both the county and city, police say.