US Columbus officials praise pilot program that uses social workers instead of police for drug, mental health emergencies
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The Alternative Response Pilot Program, a part-time pilot program in Columbus, Ohio, has been a large success for the city, leading officials to plan an expansion of the program, city officials.
The pilot program, which consists of a "Triage Pod" of a social worker, emergency communications dispatcher and paramedic, aims to cut down police involvement in mental health, drug addiction or other social issues in emergency situations.
Of the calls received by the Pod, 62.5 percent did not need immediate police or fire department intervention. According to the statement, 48 percent of the calls were either completely resolved by the dispatcher or redirected to local community resources. When calls required a law enforcement response, the Pod "actively communicated with first responders, providing de-escalation and pre-arrival information to help ensure a successful outcome."
Teen pilot makes emergency landing on New Jersey bridge
A teenage pilot had to make an emergency landing on a New Jersey bridge Monday afternoon after the aircraft experienced an engine malfunction. © Kr4shorerealestate/Instagram A teen pilot flying a single engine plane over Ocean City, NJ, made an emergency landing on Route 52 Causeway Bridge Monday afternoon after declaring at an emergency around 12:37pET, according to a statement from the FAA. Landon Lucas, 18, was flying a banner plane over the southern New Jersey shoreline when he realized the airbox of his plane was dangling off the spring, preventing a proper flow of fuel on his aircraft.
"What this program so clearly demonstrates is the need to strengthen and diversify our front-line responses so that police officers can focus on what they were always intended to do: address violent crime and keep our neighborhoods safe," Mayor Andrew J. Ginther said.
On average, the Pod handled 56 incidents, or about one every hour and 15 minutes, according to. Data was collected for 72 operational hours between June 2 and July 7.
The program comes after multiple anti-police protests erupted last year after the police killing of George Floyd. Many protesters called on officials to initiate fundamental changes to the police system.
"Society has long asked safety officers to answer every problem in our community, whether it is a car crash, homelessness or violence," said City Council President Shannon Hardin. "This pilot led to more follow-up for residents in need of resources, no one going to jail, and a better deployment of taxpayer dollars. The city will continue making improvements to build out this program through partnerships, research and iteration."
City officials said they plan to increase the Pod's hours of operation and build additional triage and follow-up units.
Biden wants more transparency for police disciplinary records. Experts say it’s harder than it sounds. .
“We have to have rules where you can be able to determine what the background, how many times a cop has violated the rules," President Biden said.“We have to have rules where you can be able to determine what the background (is), how many times a cop has violated the rules, and be able to have access to what's going on in police departments so the Justice Department can get involved in whether or not they have to change their pattern and practices,” Biden said.