Building Positive
Relationships
Between Mental Health
Consumer/Survivors and
Public Safety
Building Positive Relationships
Welcome and Introductions
Workshop Overview
– Goals: to improve communication,
collaboration, and cooperation between
police, consumers, and the community
– Improve public safety
– Improve understanding between consumers
and law enforcement
– Learn about e-CPR
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Building Positive Relationships
Public Safety Requires Understanding
and Communication to:
– Reduce incidents of traumatic/negative
interactions between consumers and law
enforcement
Honoring those who have lost their lives
during a crisis event
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Building Positive Relationships
Building Understanding and Positive
Relationships- where we go from here
IACP’s National Policy Summit, 2009
– Continuing Initiatives:
CIT National Curriculum Development Initiative
e-CPR – Another tool you can use
e-CPR- a Bridge to Understanding
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What Challenges Are You Facing
in Building Relationships?
With specific persons?
With specific organizations?
With specific mental health system
partners?
With others?
What tools do you think you need?
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What Successes Have You Had
in Building Relationships?
With Individuals?
With Organizations?
With Mental Health System Partners?
With Other Important People or
Groups?
How do you maintain those relationships?
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In Emotional Crisis Response;
What are the Concerns?
Public Safety Member
1) Keeping Everyone Safe
(including self)
2) Resolving the event
3) Following all policy / procedure
/ laws
4) Assessing - what is the
appropriate response
5) Decisional Framework: What is
best for the Community?
Force?
6) Few therapeutic tools
7) Time sensitive (possibly)
8) Others?
Person in crisis
1) Getting immediate needs met
(e.g.. Safety, food, etc)
2) Resolving the pain / discomfort
3) Feeling scared and powerless
4) Disconnected - thinking shuts
down; emotions are in
protective /survival mode.
5) Not focused on community
needs due to immediate crisis
needs; need to feel validated
6) Need support to access
personal strengths to make
good decisions
7) Take time to connect to ensure
safety
8) Becoming a victim or a criminal7
Emotional CPR (eCPR)
National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery
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eCPR
What is eCPR? a public health education program which
prepares members of the public to assist a person who is
experiencing an emotional crisis.
Why eCPR:
• There is a vast and compelling need for the general public
as well as law enforcement personnel to learn how to assist
any person who is experiencing an emotional crisis.
• Just as a person’s physical heart needs attention in a
cardiac crisis, a person’s emotional heart needs attention in
an emotional crisis.
• Just as CPR trains people to help someone in cardiac crisis,
eCPR trains people to help others in emotional crisis.
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The three elements of the practice of eCPR:
C = Connecting with Compassion and Concern to
Communicate
P = emPowerment to experience Passion, Purpose and
Planning
R = Revitalize through Reestablishing Relationships,
Routines and Rhythms in the community
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eCPR is Based on the Values of a Healthy Community
1. Respectful, trusting relationships
2. Recovery is possible for everyone, centrality of hope
3. Self-determination (dignity of choice) is vital, especially
for persons in crisis
4. Connecting on a mutually respectful emotional level
5. Validity of emotional expression
6. Cultural attunement and inclusion across diverse groups
7. Every individual is appreciated as a healthy person
inside who has encountered trauma
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Being Prepared to Provide eCPR
A. Taking care of ourselves, being centered, grounded, relaxed, in
touch with our emotions.
-Are we balanced? Tactically / Spiritually / Physically / Emotionally
Take good care of yourself so you are prepared to support someone
through an emotional crisis
• Wellness practices: meditation, exercise. –What really heals you?
• Participating in a loving community –Who are your real supporters?
B. Learning to "be" with the strong emotions expressed by the person
in distress and staying grounded and centered
• Open our heart and our mind to what the person in distress is
expressing. –Can we empathize?
• Encourage self-expression - it is an essential component of the
healing process.
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Connecting
Why is it important to be real?
Genuineness helps rapport and relationship building.
If you are not listening, and not authentic then you are not
connecting. The person in crisis is aware of this, and it is not
helpful.
Your being real may be the most important tool you bring.
•It is a way of being.
• It gives the other person permission to calm down, feel
safe, feel seen, feel validated.
•We can be with people so their real selves are comfortable.
•They get to focus on you the person, not the badge, uniform
and gun belt.
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Some Connecting Proficiencies
a. Cultivating a hopeful and positive attitude towards the
future (setting groundwork for moving forward)
b. Creating an emotionally safe relationship and
communicating care
c. Listening fully and actively, and staying present on a
deep level so you can support the person (use your
investigation skills)
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emPowerment
The responder needs to be positive and hopeful and understand
that:
1) If people in emotional crisis are effectively encouraged by
the responder, they can access their power to make good choices.
2) People in emotional crisis are more capable and resourceful
then they may appear.
As the individual in emotional crisis begins to feel safe and is able
to communicate they begin making plans and thinking more clearly.
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Some emPowering Proficiencies
a. Demonstrating a capacity to enter into a collaborative “power
with” as opposed to “power over”
b. Facilitating the other person’s access to his or her inner wisdom
c. Sensitively reframing crisis as opportunity
d. Facilitating the person’s planning ability
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It’s crucial that the planning stage be focused on specifics. Some
examples of what you might asking the person:
 How can I help you feel safe?
 What would help you feel better?
 What do you do to take good care of yourself?
 Who can I help you connect with or talk to?
 What’s the next important thing you or I can do now?
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R = Revitalize
Encourage the person to begin to engage in relationships, to
resume or begin roles in their family, with friends, or in the
community.
You may have the opportunity to engage with people after the
crisis, when s/he is no longer in crisis. This is an opportunity to
continue to build a positive, trusting relationship. This relationship
will assist in a future crisis response.
Emotional distress provides people with an opportunity to make a
change in their life.
It may be a time of searching for new meaning or purpose which
may help them stay in a positive (non-crisis) state of being longterm.
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Revitalizing Proficiencies
a. Meaning: Helping people to identify the vital center that brings
meaning and purpose to their lives.
b. Dreams: Encouraging people to take small steps in the direction of
their dreams and goals.
c. Relationships: Facilitating connections in the community to
enhance or re-establish roles, relationships, and routines.
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Comparing the eCPR Approach with
the Traditional Law Enforcement Approach
eCPR Approach
Law Enforcement
Approach
Accessible
Lay language, culturally
attuned
Professional terms, culturalcentric
Uses of
Power
Power with; we can figure this
out together
Power over; I am going to fix
the person or problem.
Belief
The person is a whole human
being and with assistance can
figure it out
Belief that person is broken,
and can not figure out what
to do without professional
help.
Use of
Avoided
labeling and
categories
Recommended
Coercion
Minimizing trauma, typically
seen as not necessary.
Exercised, seen as
necessary
Fear
Fear is diminished by being in
relationship
Fear is managed by LE via
exercising presence of being 21
in charge.
“The Take Away”
You have a lot stacked against you when responding to
a person in crisis or critical organizations.
Use opportunities and tools to be proactive in developing
positive relationships with Consumer / Survivors
wherever and whenever they occur.
Listening, addressing concerns, and showing openness
can gain you support, goodwill, and improved outcomes
with individuals and groups.
“Boldly go where few police professionals have
gone before!”
You, your agency and your community will benefit greatly!
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Contact Information
Elaine Deck
International Association of Chiefs of Police
703-647-6843; [email protected]
Ed Riddell
Department of Mental Health – Vermont
802-241-2303; [email protected]
Lauren Spiro,
National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery, www.ncmhr.org;
www.emotional-cpr.org, 703-862-6512; [email protected]
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