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A Day In The Life Of A Mental Health Emergency Responder
capital public radio

Cops don’t just enforce the law. They must also find ways to peacefully resolve mental health emergencies. Reporter Bob Moffitt rides along with Sacramento police officer Michelle Lazark. She’s part of a team that is trained to respond to the non-stop need for mental health services in the county.

The day shift for the Sacramento Police Department’s Psychiatric Emergency Response Team has barely started and the calls are already rolling in. Lazark is listening to the radio and making cell phone calls.

“Hi, James, this is Officer Michelle Lazark with the Sacramento police department,” Lazark leaves a message.”I understand you’ve received some really bad news and I’d like to talk to you. Give me a call. I’d like to help you.”

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