All frontline police staff in North Yorkshire to be given mental health training

Hundreds more staff are due to be trained. Credit: PA

Specialist training in mental health issues is to be given to frontline staff working for North Yorkshire Police following a pilot study.

It follows an assessment in which mental health workers gave training to 230 officers in a bid to improve their understanding and ability to identify people with mental health needs.

The York Trials Unit at the University of York studied the findings, which showed 10 per cent of the more than 9,000 calls looked at were given a mental health tag.

It revealed that the training did not reduce the number of reported incidents after six months but it may have a positive effect on how police record incidents.

The training delivered by mental health professionals from Tees Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust has been particularly helpful, both improving our understanding of our respective roles and capabilities, and strengthening the relationships between operational staff in the complex landscape of mental health crisis care. That, in turn, helps us provide a better service to people in distress.

– DEPUTY CHIEF CONSTABLE LISA WINWARD, NORTH YORKSHIRE POLICE

The trial was part of Connect, a collaborative project between the university and the force, which is administered by the College of Policing.

The survey results suggest that there was a positive change in police officers’ knowledge, attitudes and confidence in responding to incidents involving individuals with mental health problems.

Source: http://www.itv.com/news/calendar/2017-09-11/all-frontline-police-staff-in-north-yorkshire-to-be-given-mental-health-training/

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