Date of Paper


Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)


Social Work

First Advisor

Ande Nesmith


Social Work


This study provides an analysis of the interaction between people with SPMI (Serious and Persistent Mental Illness) and police officers who have undergone CIT (Crisis Intervention Team) Training, an intervention aimed at equipping law enforcement officers with knowledge and training about mental illness. The researcher utilized an open-ended, qualitative interview research design consisting of 11 interviews, each lasting approximately 30-45 minutes. Research participants were identified via purposive sampling. Utilizing open coding, four themes were identified during this study: 1.) CIT Training challenges old and ingrained ways of thinking about police work. 2.) CIT Training teaches the importance of building rapport. 3.) CIT Training teaches the value of slowing down and thinking before acting. 4.) CIT Training and officer safety do not have to be mutually exclusive. Following inductive analysis, the researcher concluded that CIT Training was effective in teaching police officers applicable skills and concepts conducive to improved interactions with people with SPMI.

Included in

Social Work Commons