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An assessment of Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) community partnerships to address mental health and racial disparities in police violence across the United States

Hassett, Elizabeth (2021) An assessment of Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) community partnerships to address mental health and racial disparities in police violence across the United States. Master Essay, University of Pittsburgh.

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Abstract

Background: Mental health and racial disparities as they relate to police violence continue to persist in the U.S.: those with mental illness are 16 times more likely to become the victim of a deadly police shooting, and black individuals are far more likely to face lethal force from police. Black individuals also face a higher rate of mental illness largely due to their lived experiences, which increases their chances of interacting with the police. Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) programs intend to decrease police violence by equipping officers with the necessary knowledge and partnerships to divert those in mental health crisis away from the criminal justice system.

Methods: This paper uses the University of Memphis’ CIT Map to establish the distribution and types of CIT programs and partnerships across the U.S. It also uses the National Association of Mental Illness’s (NAMI) partnership recommendations as the basis for rigorous CIT partnerships.

Results: The findings indicate that 2,886 CIT programs cover nearly one-quarter of the country’s population, and most of these programs are organized by law enforcement. However, CIT partnerships are extremely limited in their distribution: 375 partnerships exist, meaning that for every county with a program, only 0.49 partnerships are engaged. The partnerships that do exist cover four of five recommended partner areas, with public officials as the only missing category.

Public Health Relevance: Police violence, law enforcement, and lack of mental health treatment can lead to not only physical, but also to psychological, harm on the community level. CIT programs offer a mechanism to address these mental health and racial disparities as they relate to police violence, but they must engage rigorous community partnerships to do so. CIT partnerships are a direct indicator of CIT program success. Therefore, a properly-structured program should decrease police violence, connect individuals in mental health crisis with the appropriate resources, and increase the number of individuals that are put on a path to recovery.


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Details

Item Type: Other Thesis, Dissertation, or Long Paper (Master Essay)
Status: Unpublished
Creators/Authors:
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Hassett, Elizabetheah97@pitt.edueah97
Contributors:
ContributionContributors NameEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairHershey, Tina Batratbh16@pitt.edutbh16UNSPECIFIED
Committee Co-ChairGarland, Richardrig11@pitt.edurig11UNSPECIFIED
Date: 10 May 2021
Date Type: Completion
Number of Pages: 67
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Graduate School of Public Health > Health Policy & Management
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master Essay
Refereed: Yes
Date Deposited: 10 May 2021 22:00
Last Modified: 10 May 2021 22:00
URI: http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/id/eprint/40694

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