June 24, 2024

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Mike Duggan, James White push for mental health at Mackinac Policy Conference

4 min read

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan and Police Chief James White, speaking Wednesday at the Mackinac Policy Conference, tapped into the city’s mental health division as an example of ways to address crises.

The panel on Michigan’s “greatest challenge” gathered an audience to watch excerpts from the Detroit Police Department’s bodycam footage showing how police addressed mental health runs. Since taking the role as chief, White has pushed for a mental health division to provide officers training on managing stressful or tragic runs.

“When the state’s mental health system fails, people have psychotic breaks. You know who deals with them in this state? Police officers, every single day, and in Detroit, Chief White actually built a mental health division within the Detroit Police Department because it’s what he had to do to cope,” Duggan said, asking attendees how many of them understand how the mental health system works in Michigan, garnering only two hands raised.


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