Crisis Intervention

Communities throughout Florida and the United States have adopted the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT), Memphis model for law enforcement training. This model has proven to be the most effective means of training law enforcement personnel on how assist people with a mental illness, who may be in crisis.


The 40 hours of training is intensive and interactive. It establishes what amounts to a team concept for the CIT trained patrol officers who are often times the first responders to calls involving a person with a mental illness. The objective of agencies who have adopted the CIT model is to have one or two CIT trained officers on each shift. The Oakland Police Department embraces the CIT model and is committed to having 100% of its full time patrol officers CIT trained.

The CIT training is a collaborative effort between law enforcement, mental health providers, hospitals and families. It is a community partnership and is very much a grass roots program.

CIT training emphasizes the understanding of mental illness, including substance abuse disorders and how these affect a person’s life. This is done through the development of communication skills, practical experience and role playing. Officers are exposed to mental health professionals, consumers and family members both in the classroom and in the field.

CIT Course

The CIT course is designed to provide law enforcement officers with a basic understanding of mental illness. The training is intended to provide officers with the skills to:
  • Recognize signs and symptoms of mental illness and co-occurring disorders
  • Recognize whether those signs and symptoms represent a crisis situation
  • De-escalate crisis due to mental illness
  • Know where to take consumers who are in crisis
  • Learn about jail diversion options
  • Learn appropriate to follow up, such as contacting case mangers, providing families with a list of community resources.
  • Learn how to solve within the treatment system