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Appleton Police Chief talks mental health response in latest Community Update

Local News

APPLETON, Wis. (WFRV) – Appleton Police Chief Todd Thomas, along with Sarah Bassing-Sutton from N.E.W. Mental Health Connection, joined Local 5 to discuss mental health in the latest Community Update.

Thomas says Appleton has a new team called the Community Response Team. It brings a social worker into the police department to help with situations involving mental health. Thomas also mentioned that mental health situations have accelerated in the past year and a half.

Law enforcement will reportedly partner with a social worker and head to incidents together. Thomas talked about how in some instances the social worker can take the lead as opposed to the officer.

It was even mentioned that possibly in the future, law enforcement officers aren’t responding to these incidents but rather mental health professionals.

Bassing-Sutton said that the community came together to help make this happen.

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