Save the Date: Digital Day of Action on July 20 to Promote 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline to Criminal Justice Stakeholders

As you know, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) will be implementing the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline on July 16, 2022. For criminal justice stakeholders, 988 is an important opportunity to shift people in crisis toward appropriate care and ideally minimize contact with law enforcement and the justice system. To fully take advantage of this, however, criminal justice partners need to be aware of what 988 provides and prepare processes to appropriately direct people to 988 prior to contact with law enforcement and through to reentry.

To promote the implementation of 988 to a criminal justice audience, The Council of State Governments (CSG) Justice Center, working closely with the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs’ Bureau of Justice Assistance and SAMHSA, is organizing a broad group of national organizations involved with criminal justice and behavioral health crisis response to raise awareness through social media.

Together, we will host a digital “Day of Action” on Wednesday, July 20, 2022, focused on informing criminal justice stakeholders about the opportunities this new dialing code presents. We hope that you are interested in engaging in this day of action as a partner. Partners will receive a promotional toolkit that includes suggested language and digital graphics your organization can use on your social media and newsletter channels during the day of action. If your organization is interested in becoming a partner, please complete this form by Wednesday, July 13, 2022. If you have any questions, contact Hallie Fader-Towe at

Thank you for your consideration and we hope you will join us in this effort!

Ayesha Delany-Brumsey, PhD

Director of Behavioral Health, the CSG Justice Center

Updated: Jul 13


In recent years, there has been greater awareness that developmental disabilities may go undetected in individuals who come into contact with the criminal justice system. As first responders, law enforcement officers may encounter people with developmental disabilities or co-occurring conditions (mental health conditions and developmental disabilities) and as such have an opportunity to set the stage for effective interactions with the justice system for this population. Understanding how to interact with people with developmental disabilities—including identification, communication, and de-escalation—can enhance the safety and effectiveness of these encounters.

Presented by the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance's Academic Training to Inform Police Responses Initiative, this webinar will provide an overview of this topic from the perspectives of law enforcement and a person with a developmental disability, including emerging issues and practical tips officers can use to respond effectively to this population.


  1. Chief William Scott, San Francisco (CA) Police Department

  2. Chief Ronald Sellon, Mansfield (MA) Police Department

  3. Russell Lehmann, Internationally Recognized Motivational Speaker, Author, and Advocate

  4. Leigh Ann Davis, Senior Director of Criminal Justice Initiatives, The Arc of the United States and National Center on Criminal Justice and Disability


Webinar Recording


Downloadable Materials

Download PDF • 4.09MB
Download PDF • 322KB

Updated: Jul 13

September 16, 2020

Rural communities can face many challenges when developing and delivering crisis response programs for people with behavioral health conditions and intellectual and developmental disabilities, including wide geographic areas to serve, limitations in options for local treatment and social services, and resource constraints related to funding and staffing. Across the United States, rural communities have adapted most promising practices in crisis response to overcome these challenges and address the need for services in their jurisdictions by having mental health providers meet people in crisis where they are, either in-person or through telehealth services. These programs can prevent the need for additional resources, such as police and emergency medical services, to respond to individuals in crisis and may enhance short- and long-term outcomes for these individuals. Presented by the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance's Academic Training to Inform Police Responses Initiative, this webinar featured two programs that have adapted crisis response for use in rural communities. Panelists presented the innovative approaches in crisis response implemented by their programs and discuss the challenges of ensuring the needs of individuals in crisis who live in rural communities are met. Additionally, the Academic Training project team highlighted key resources to support rural communities developing and implementing crisis response in their jurisdiction.



Larry Smith, CPRSS

Grand Lake Mental Health Center

​Josh Cantwell, LCSW

Grand Lake Mental Health Center


​Kasey Parker

Mental Health Association of Nebraska

​Captain Mike Woolman

Lincoln (NE) Police Department

​A Unique Partnership of People with Lived Experiences, Law Enforcement, and Community Partners


Webinar Recording


Downloadable Materials

Rural Crisis Response Transcript
Download DOCX • 48KB
Rural Crisis Response Slides
Download PDF • 7.06MB