Mental Health Unit
The mission of the Madison Police Department Mental Health Unit is to provide a coordinated, professional and compassionate police response to individuals affected by mental illness and their families. The Mental Health Unit will work collaboratively with partner agencies to achieve improved outcomes for individuals affected by mental illnesses or suffering a crisis by connecting them to needed services and diverting them away from the criminal justice system whenever possible. The work of the Mental Health Unit will reduce calls for police service related to mental illness issues and will improve safety for officers and all members of the community.
- Problem solving: We believe in identifying the underlying issues creating police calls and reducing them.
- Collaboration: We engage with partners from across the government, civil society, families and consumers to improve systems, relationships, and outcomes.
- Diversion: We aim to reduce the involvement of criminal justice in mental health issues and the criminalization of mental illness.
- Professional development: We seek increased knowledge and expertise within the unit and to share our knowledge and experience with the department at large.
"The partnership between Journey Mental Health Center's Crisis Unit and Madison Police is invaluable. It has been inspiring to see a law enforcement agency so dedicated to understanding the individuals that come to their attention. The Madison Police Department, and more specifically the Mental Health Officer Team, has been willing to learn about mental health and non-physical crisis intervention. The work that the Madison Police Department in concert with Journey Mental Health Center's Crisis Team, provides the City of Madison's residents an opportunity to get mental health support in lieu of being incarcerated." -Hannah Flanagan, Director of Emergency Services for Journey Mental Health Center
"Our collaborative relationship with the Madison Police Department to provide intensive CIT training has demonstrated significant improvement in communication, ensuring officer and community safety and helping to connect those in crisis to mental health services." -Lindsay Wallace, Executive Director NAMI Dane County
February 12, 2021 10:06 AM
MPD’s Community Outreach unit, in partnership with Common Wealth Development, facilitated direct conversations between Chief Barnes and Madison area youth during the Chief’s second week. “The idea of leadership is to lead for the future” Chief Barnes shared with youth participants in one of the … [read more]
November 10, 2020 1:06 PM
On Tuesday, September 15th officers from the Madison Police Department worked in collaboration with the 100 Black Men of Madison to conduct a community service food distribution. Officers met during the morning of September 15th, with members of the 100 Black Men of Madison, and organized a … [read more]
October 22, 2020 1:24 PM
Madison Area Addiction Recovery Initiative The Madison Area Addiction Recovery Initiative (MAARI) is a Bureau of Justice Assistance initiative that seeks to refer persons who overdose or are stopped for low-level, victimless offenses and offer them a referral to medication-assisted and … [read more]