A Guide for Ann Arbor City Officials To Improved Public Safety Services
D. Recognize and Utilize Local Expertise
(Numbering of principles is continuous through sections A - F.)
6. First and foremost, policy development and implementation should incorporate the insights of peer support specialists. These are
people who live in recovery from mental health conditions, substance abuse, domestic violence, unstable housing, or other conditions often correlated with emergency crises and who are trained in crisis response. Their personal journeys in receiving services and supports give them invaluable insights. The State of Michigan offers training to individuals hired by an agency or authority and then confers the title of “certified peer support specialist (CPSS)”. The recruitment of peer support specialists should extend to all those with the required skills, training, and experience and should not be limited to those with the CPSS certification.
7. City and County officials should collaborate because both bring institutional strengths and contextual insights to policy formation
and implementation. If City officials attempt to establish an independent unarmed public safety response program, the effort will be confusing to residents and wasteful of taxpayer funds.
8. City officials, in cooperation with County officials, should endeavor to improve current policies and procedures — including the
pending launch of 988. Specifically, City officials should not establish a new 24/7 telephone hot line but rather work to improve procedures governing current calls to a) 911, b) the WCCMH Access Line (734-544-3050), c) 211, d) future calls to 988, and e) other crisis response numbers operated by local non-profit institutions.
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A. Deflect and Diversion from Law Enforcement To Help Through Counseling and Therapy
B. Respond To the Current Crisis Among Children and Youth
C. Recognize 988 Will Soon Take Its Place Alongside 911
E. Recognize People -- Not Abstract "Institutions" -- Implement Policies