Gillian Plude

Document Type


Publication Date



Mental health clinicians are needed in the law enforcement field to further prevent the wrongful incarceration of those enduring crises. More often than not, when officers have arrived on the scene of a 911 call, the individual in question has put themselves or others in danger due to an altered mental state. While this could be attributed to drug usage, addiction also falls under the umbrella of a mental disorder, and the incarceration of those with this issue does nothing to resolve the problem at hand. Furthermore, we have seen increased rates of overpopulation in our prison system for years, with upwards of 40% being those who are mentally ill. Not only has this been proven to be a point of concern through the law enforcement lens, but also through that of mental health clinicians. The installation of their services on every call, regardless of the offense, allows for a plethora of actions to be taken in deescalating the impact of the situation. In the case of a murder, homicide, or shooting, not only would the clinician be able to deal with victims and their families, but also the offender themselves to figure out what sparked their need to do so. However, perhaps the most impactful use of this system would be in suicide prevention because without the proper training on how to talk a person out of the act, success rates are limited to the ability of an officer with minimal training in mental health services.

Faculty Mentor

Barbara Frazier, LP.D.

Academic Discipline

College of Arts & Sciences



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