TSB is expanding one of its programs to help address the growing mental health and homeless crisis in the area.
T-MET stands for Transit Mental Evaluation Team, and it has been part of TSB for 15 years. A sworn-in deputy and mental health professional make up a team that is tasked with responding to people in a mental health crisis and helping the homeless receive resources. This year, the program expanded and there are now 10 teams at TSB, and another 44 to cover the rest of L.A. County.
Using words as his weapon in a situation that could quickly escalate, Deputy Joseph Barker is prepared thanks to MILO.
MILO is a computer program that puts deputies like Barker in simulated scenarios, giving them hands-on experience in how to handle someone having a mental health crisis.
“It’s a great opportunity to be in a critical incident in a safe environment where you can think things through. You can try it over again. You can learn from your mistakes,” Deputy Barker explained.
Deputy Barker is a certified academy instructor, using MILO to teach Transit Services Bureau deputies the indicators of a mental health issue. One of MILO’s scenarios was a veteran, audibly distressed.
“Nobody listens to me, no one understands,” the simulated veteran yelled in the scenario.
Deputy Barker stresses the importance of de-escalation using active listening techniques.
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Article by: Taylor Torregano Downey, published on November 13, 2020, Spectrum News1