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Phoenix Police Training Program Helps Officers Deal With Mental Health Issues

Valley police officers face any number of uncertainties when they respond to a call, but a training program aims to help them recognize and deal with people suffering from a behavioral health issue, as was the case with a recent standoff in Phoenix.

Nick Margiotta is the Crisis Intervention Training Coordinator for the Phoenix Police Department. He says in addition to discussion about how to defuse situations involving people in crisis, the 40-hour training program also includes a lot of discussion about how to divert people away from the criminal justice system, and into the behavioral health system.

Mark Brodie is a co-host of The Show, KJZZ’s locally produced news magazine. Since starting at KJZZ in 2002, Brodie has been a host, reporter and producer, including several years covering the Arizona Legislature, based at the Capitol.