New Haven residents are invited to weigh in on an alternative 911 response team
New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker wants public input for a new crisis team that would respond to certain emergencies instead of police. It’s part of the city’s vision to re-imagine law enforcement in the aftermath of the 2020 police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, which sparked global Black Lives Matter protests.
Elicker and the Connecticut Mental Health Center are holding a series of public meetings this week to help shape the New Haven Community Crisis Response Team.
Elicker said that there was a good turnout at the first Zoom meeting on Saturday, with 40 people in attendance.
“Generally, the consensus from the individuals that showed up endorsed the overall idea of the concept,” Elicker said.
Elicker said the team could be another first-line unit that will respond to 911 calls for issues that don’t need law enforcement present. It could specialize in harm reduction and offer rapid access to social services.
“They particularly highlighted the importance of having someone that is knowledgeable about the neighborhoods being involved, whether it's on a team or being closely involved with the team,” Elicker said of the feedback he has gotten from residents so far.
The second Zoom meeting is being held on Tuesday, October 26, at 6 p.m. The final meeting this week will take place on Thursday, October 28, at 5:30 p.m. at James Hillhouse High School.
To register for an event or submit comments, visit https://ccrt.newhavenct.gov.