NC mental health counselors help police officers respond to 911 calls

CHAPEL HILL, NC (WRAL) — Chapel Hill Police Department is the only department in the Triangle that has mental health clinicians help officers respond to 911 calls.

Each time Sergeant Paul Bell responds to mental health calls in Chapel Hill, a licensed mental health counselor is riding shotgun.

Megan Johnson, leads a team of five mental health first responders who are on call all hours of the day.

The crisis unit is trained to help deescalate a situation where someone may want to take their own life. The counselors have specific training to help people who are struggling with substance abuse. The unit focus is on helping people who are struggling receive treatment for their specific needs.

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