What is CIT?

Crisis Intervention Team training is a community initiative designed to improve the outcomes of police interactions with people living with mental illnesses. CIT programs are local partnerships between law enforcement, mental health providers, local NAMI chapters and other community stakeholders. CIT programs provide 40 hours of training for law enforcement on how to better respond to people experiencing a mental health crisis. CIT is not just a training. Effective CIT programs are based on strong relationships between law enforcement, mental health care providers, families and people living with mental illness. CIT is a long-lasting, evolving partnership based on mutual goals. 

Core Elements of CIT&CIP Wisconsin Training Programs

Sample Agenda of CIT Wisconsin Training Program


What are the benefits of CIT?

  • Overview of various mental illnesses (symptoms, treatments, myths and facts)
  • Presentations & discussion with family members and people living with mental illness
  • Education on de-escalating mental health crises safely and effectively
  • Interactive role-plays on crisis de-escalation with feedback from trainers
  • Other activities might include: auditory hallucination (hearing voices) simulations, site visits, ride-alongs with community social workers and more

What is the Core Philosophy Behind CIT?

  • Improve officer and consumer safety
  • Redirect individuals with mental illness from the Judicial System to the Health Care System
  •  Develop a positive perception and increased confidence among police officers
  •  Provide and efficient crisis response time
  • Create and sustain more effective interactions and relationships among law enforcement, mental health care providers, individuals with mental illness, their families, and communities to reduce the stigma of mental illness

What is the status of CIT in WI?

NAMI Fox Valley and the Appleton Police Department brought CIT to Wisconsin in 2004. Since then, hundreds of officers have attended trainings and many communities have formed their own local CIT programs.

NAMI Wisconsin has recently been awarded a CIT/CIP expansion grant to expand the philosophy of these trainings statewide. Click here to see the map of CIT trained officers in your county.


 
 
The strength of CIT is in relationships—community partnerships backed up by a real commitment to work together to improve the lives of individuals with mental health needs and their families
— Maj. Sam Cochran, Founder and Coordinator, Memphis CIT Program