Boone County Sheriffs complete CIT training
COLUMBIA - The Boone County Sheriff's Department completed a week-long training program on Friday, cumulating with a role-playing exercise to showcase the skills participants learned.
The program, headed by the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT), taught officers how to better manage a crisis involving individuals with mental health, substance abuse and other issues. The program involves 40 hours of training meant to improve the safety of officers and citizens alike.
Deputy Charles Blair said the role-playing aspect of the program was very important in the learning process.
"Classroom stuff, when you're looking at papers or slides is much different than actually putting the things you learn into an actual event where you can work through the process," Blair said. "Once the scenario is done, you can see how people react to what you did."
Blair said the past week was eye-opening.
"There's a lot of resources and services that Boone County offers its citizens that I wasn't aware of. I've gotten training that I've never put to use before but will help me do my job and serve my community better."
Sergeant Matt Halford has helped teach the material, and said the program has helped everyone involved.
"If you give officers the education that this program provides, I feel like it makes for a better, more well-rounded and seasoned officer," Halford said. "They'll have not only training but also experience and knowledge on how to handle certain situations."