(TRENTON) – Assemblywoman Joann Downey (D-Monmouth), chair of the Assembly Human Services Committee, released the following statement in response to the announcement from New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal that he is expanding crisis intervention training for New Jersey police officers:
“Law enforcement officers have a duty to protect and serve all people in their communities, including those with disabilities. However, situations involving people with intellectual or developmental disabilities or mental health issues can present complex challenges for officers in their response. For example, a child with autism may be afraid of a police car with flashing lights, or a senior with dementia may have trouble understanding that an officer is there to help.
“Expanding crisis intervention training will help police officers better protect vulnerable residents. As the daughter of a New Jersey State Trooper, I’m pleased to see the Attorney General prioritize this very important training as we work to strengthen trust between police officers and their communities.”