The current study examines the impact of a recently implemented community-based Crisis Outreach and Support Team (COAST) in a small Canadian police service. COAST pairs a police officer from the South Simcoe Police Service in Ontario, Canada with a crisis response worker from either the Canadian Mental Health Association or York Support Services Network. Through a pre- versus post-implementation analysis, key outcome variables were examined. Results demonstrated that there were significant differences between general patrol and COAST in terms of time spent on crisis-related calls and this was associated with a reduced cost to the service. Additionally, compared to pre-implementation rates, the Service saw an increase in community resources provided to clients in need and a decrease in involuntary apprehensions. These initial findings provide some preliminary support for the value of the COAST initiative in the South Simcoe Police Service.

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Community Mental Health Journal
Police Research Lab

Semple, T. (Tori), Tomlin, M. (Matt), Bennell, C, & Jenkins, B. (Bryce). (2020). An Evaluation of a Community-Based Mobile Crisis Intervention Team in a Small Canadian Police Service. Community Mental Health Journal. doi:10.1007/s10597-020-00683-8