NAMI opens its Living Room for new mental health crisis approach
In a first for Indiana, a $1.28M grant will give those dealing with non-emergency mental health symptoms a place to go. Plus, Rep. Sheila Klinker adds drag show emcee to the resume.
Today’s Based in Lafayette is sponsored by Purdue University’s Presidential Lecture Series. Paul Alivisatos, the 14th president of the University of Chicago, will join President Mung Chiang for a discussion at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 12, in Stewart Center’s Fowler Hall. This event is free and open to the public with a general admission ticket. Learn more and reserve your seat: purdue.edu/president/lecture-series/upcoming-event.
NAMI OPENS ITS LIVING ROOM FOR NEW MENTAL HEALTH CRISIS APPROACH
The idea for the Living Room, a new peer-to-peer service for non-emergency mental health crisis in Lafayette, started during a Crisis Intervention Team meeting in 2020 between mental health agencies and local police.
Sheri Moore, executive director of the National Alliance on Mental Illness-West Central Indiana, said the numbers came back that Lafayette police were responding to four mental health crisis calls per officer, per shift.
“You can imagine the number of calls that they took and the amount of time they were taking to handle mental health crises,” Moore said Tuesday. “We don’t want to put a mental health crisis back on our police officers.”
She said local stakeholders started looking into how other communities were handling similar situations and found NAMI regions in suburban Chicago having success with the Living Room concept. Those were places where people could go at no cost as they were dealing with anything from anxiety before a work shift to someone with suicidal thoughts to hang out, talk with a peer counselor and get additional services if things escalated.
In 2022, NAMI received $1.28 million in a Community Catalyst Grant, federal funds funneled through the Indiana Division of Mental Health and Addiction, to back the opening and operations over the next three years of the first Living Room concept in the state.