COLUMBUS, Miss.—First responders from around the Golden Triangle came together Thursday to talk about mental health and safety in the area.
Spokesman Neal Austin of the Columbus Fire Department said they try to get together and talk about their plans for handling people with mental health problems at least once a year.
“They can become aggressive and put officers in danger,” he said.
Austin pointed out not all persons with mental health problems are violent and much of what goes into their planning is for people with Alzheimer’s and such. Once example was a plan for somewhere who walks off from their home and forgets where they’re located.
He said their plan at its core is pretty simple.
“Get involved first and to try to help as much as we can, but keep ourselves and our first responders safe.”
The Connecticut shooting has of course put the violent incidents on the forefront for many state agencies. It’s not a surprise that the conversation has now turned to how to deal with individuals in the state according to Austin.