Shawnigan lends itself as an additional means of dealing with people who present danger because of their mental state or because they are heavily intoxicated.
As part of a pilot project launched in collaboration with health authorities, a social worker joined the local Sûreté du Québec unit. She is tasked with supporting police officers when they face such situations, outside of their regular duties.
The assassination of Sergeant Maureen Brew in Louisville underscores the severity of the problem.
“We currently have a pilot program to ensure that this person provides tools to police officers who can appropriately intervene with individuals who may be suffering from mental health issues,” Shawinigan Mayor Michael Angers pointed out.
The Trois-Rivières police were the first to introduce a similar approach model in 2019. The model was later exported to Drummondville, Saint-Georges, Rimouski, Saint-Hyacinthe, Rouyn and now Shawinigan.
Street workers in Shawinigan demonstrate the benefits of having a social worker alongside the police. “Over the past few months, we have become aware of certain situations [pour lesquelles]Yes, having this worker would have helped those arrested by the police,” said Melissa Brassard of TRàSH.
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