APD Annual Reports - 2018 Annual Report - Page 58

Community Support Unit The Community Support Unit focuses on providing resources to people in need experiencing a mental health crisis, poverty, and homelessness. The unit has several strategic partnerships to assist individuals including the Arlington Housing Authority, JPS Hospital, Tarrant County MHMR, Veteran Affairs, and Mission Arlington. The department has three law liaisons who ride out with a specialized Mental Health Peace Officer in each patrol district. The ride outs occur once per week. The purpose of the team approach is to connect with clients within two weeks of receiving mental health services and respond to assess and prioritize follow up care to decrease the risk that individuals will experience another crisis. The Crime Prevention Unit seeks out opportunities to assist patrol districts with educating community members on the various programs and citizen outreach efforts. The unit is led by a lieutenant and sergeant 58 | 2018 Annual Report with four crime prevention officers and two professional staff employees, who lead the departmental efforts in community engagement. In 2018, the department had a total of 175 students graduate from the High School Citizens Police Academy (HSCPA), the Citizens Police Academy (CPA), and the Hispanic Citizens Police Academy (HCPA). The unit manages the volunteer system and prepares the department for National Night Out each year. In 2018, there were 232 registered community watch groups in Arlington. This level of community engagement led to Arlington’s first place for community participation in National Night Out. The unit manages Nextdoor which is a social media platform to disseminate public safety information to 63,517 active residents on the site. Crime prevention officers attend safety fairs, special events, and manage district issues related to citizens requesting officers at a function. Last year, Citizens on Patrol Mobile volunteers conducted speed surveys, which the department used to direct resources to problematic areas.