KPD to Have Social Workers on Drug and Mental Health Calls

The Knoxville City Council has approved a pilot program to send social workers with KPD officers responding to drug and mental health calls.

The partnership is with the Helen Ross McNabb Center. Candace Allen with the Center says they’ve been looking at a plan like this for years and have been training officers in crisis intervention.

Allen said, “What they do lack is the expertise of working with someone who has mental illness or an addition issue and all of the knowledge of how you help that person receive treatment and making referrals.”

There was some push back at the meeting Tuesday. Opponents wanted social workers paired with paramedics instead.

“As social workers, we are called by our code of ethics to advocate for people who are experiencing oppression,” said Allen. “So, when you align social workers with police, a lot of the times people in the community might have an increase of mistrust with social workers in general.”

Officials say they hope to have the program started by October.

There is no custom code to display.

Weather

  • Forecast
  • Currents
  • Planner

What's happening

2020 Election Coverage

2020 Election Coverage

Tune in on Thursday, August 6th starting at 8 PM for complete coverage of the 2020 United States senate and congressional elections. Presented by Standard Kitchen & Bath and Games & Things.

Cumulus Knoxville COVID-19 Resource Center

Cumulus Knoxville COVID-19 Resource Center

Listen to Hallerin Hilton Hill discuss with official resources as he provides you with important information regarding the COVID-19 crisis, and how you can get relief through local & federal resources. Find all the information you need to know about COVID-19 testing, relief, & resources, with web links and more here.

Local Love

Local Love

Cumulus Knoxville loves the local community. We want to show some local love by encouraging you to shop at East Tennessee businesses.

Heroes of Health

Heroes of Health

Cumulus Media thanks all of the Heroes of Health in our community, from first responders to health care workers, who have been on the frontlines during the COVID-19 crisis. View a list of local health heroes here.