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Lane County Hopes Consent Form Will Help First Responders Deal With People in Crisis

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Rachael McDonald
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Lane County is hoping to change the way law enforcement and other first responders interact with people with mental illness. A simple consent form is part of a new initiative aimed at improving response to those in crisis. 

The voluntary form will include information about a person’s mental health condition and who to contact in a crisis.  Lane County Sheriff Byron Trapp says his deputies interact with people with mental illnesses regularly. 
 “And so, I know that these circumstances occur in Lane County with city police officers, state troopers, and deputy sheriffs and parole and probation.” Trapp says, “These occur on a daily basis. So this is critical to enhancing the safety of our community members, those who suffer the mental illnesses and their families and certainly for the officers involved.”

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Credit Rachael McDonald
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Trapp says the consent form information will be shared among law enforcement agencies. He says it gives options for de-escalation and resolution that the officers might otherwise not know of and may keep people with mental illnesses out of jail. 
 

Rachael McDonald is KLCC’s former News Director. Rachael has a BA in English from the University of Oregon. She started out in public radio as a newsroom volunteer at KLCC in 2000. After reporting for the Northwest News Network and KAZU, Rachael returned to KLCC in 2007 as Morning Edition host and a general assignment reporter covering politics, the environment, education, and the arts. She was hired as KLCC News Director in 2018. Rachael departed KLCC in June, 2022.